Hundreds of textile workers have rioted after the shooting dead of a colleague and the arrest of a labour leader in Dhaka on Monday, police and witnesses said.

The riot allegedly began after police arrested Mahbubur Rahman Ismail while he was negotiating workers' pay demands with factory owners at an industrial estate.

In the ensuing riot, in which workers armed with bricks and sticks attacked police, one worker was killed and at least 20 others wounded, while five policemen also suffered injuries.

Police confirmed the shooting, identifying the dead worker as 22-year-old Kamal Uddin.

Ismail was later released from custody, but at least 20 other workers were arrested during the six-hour rampage.

Bangladesh's clothing industry, which employs around two million people, generates export earnings of $5 billion a year.