In response to the petition, the High Court has given the Bangladesh Accord Foundation, the Labour Ministry and the chief inspector at the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments four weeks in which to respond

In response to the petition, the High Court has given the Bangladesh Accord Foundation, the Labour Ministry and the chief inspector at the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments four weeks in which to respond

Bangladesh's High Court is understood to have halted the implementation of a second term of the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety due to its tenure being extended without the Government's approval.

The move was made following the filing of a writ petition by the Bangladesh National Garment Workers Employees League at the weekend, according to local reports. The bench of Justice Quazi Reza-Ul Hoque and Justice Mohammad Ullah have now frozen the new agreement until 15 May 2018.

Primark, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), Inditex, Adidas, PVH Corp and N Brown Group are among over 20 brands and unions to have signed up to the new and improved 2018 Accord, which was launched in June. It is due to enter into effect when the current Accord expires in May 2018, and will run to 2021 with new worker protections and plans to inspect and renovate more factories.

Bangladesh '2018 Accord' promises new worker protections

Lawyers Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh, Mohammad Mehedi Hasan Chowdhury, and Imtiaz Moinul Islam Neelim stood for the writ petitioner during the hearing. Neelim told Bdnews24.com: "It's a one-sided agreement because the Accord did not take permission from the government, owners and workers before signing it."

In response to the petition, the High Court has given the Bangladesh Accord Foundation, the Labour Ministry and the chief inspector at the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments four weeks in which to respond.

A spokesperson for the Accord told just-style: "As this relates to an ongoing legal proceeding we are not commenting on the matter."

Earlier this month unions renewed their calls for more fashion brands to sign up to the new Bangladesh Accord, with less than a quarter of those in the current agreement so far committed. Of the more than 200 brands in the original Accord, just 46 have signed up so far.

More brands urged to join 2018 Accord signatories