Meet Nurjahan Khatun. The 24-year-old, hailing from Nandigram in the Bogra district of Bangladesh, is a sample operator at Echotex - a progressive manufacturing facility in Gazipur, Dhaka, that employs over 11,000 people. Echotex supplies to many high street brands as well as Ninety Percent, the ethically-minded contemporary label that shares 90 per cent of its profits. Nurjahan works within the sample division for Ninety Percent. Echotex is the primary supplier to Ninety Percent and has a business ethos that prioritizes people and planet over profit. It is a pioneer when it comes to ethical practices and has a unique focus on worker welfare. The Ninety Percent team sat down with Nurjahan at work to see what makes her tick...
Hello Nurjahan! We’d love to know more about you and what you enjoy doing. Let’s start with your family. Tell us about them…
I have my mother, father and two younger sisters in my family. And I am married. My husband’s family live in the country home, just the two of us live here in Gazipur. My husband’s family is large! He is the fourth one of five brothers in the family and we are happy together.
How long have you been working at Echotex and what does your job entail?
I have been working at Echotex for five years. I currently work as a sample operator in the sample section of Echotex’s Ninety Percent department. I work on the newer samples and like to do the top labelling amongst all other tasks.
What do you like about working at Echotex?
I like working here so much because Echotex provides a lot of opportunities to its workers. It provides free lunch, free medical services for every staff member and they have [the subsidized store] Echo-mart and a childcare facility, as well. I want to work here for a long time and then I would like to go back to my country home and fulfill my cherished dream to build a good cattle farm over there.
What do you like to do in your leisure time?
Whenever I get time, I play Ludo – usually with my next-door neighbours and my husband.
On our day off my husband and I like to visit nearby places such as the Safari Park and Ansar Academy Field. When we have our longer vacation we’d like to visit the beach at Cox’s Bazar. I also want to travel to Sylhet [in Eastern Bangladesh] because it is beautiful.
What do you miss about your childhood?
I remember playing with my friends and going to school. We used to play Kanamachi and Bouchi, a traditional Bengali sport. I miss this one because I liked how we had to run and catch one another - it was a fun game.
What will make Bangladesh prosper?
With the rise of the garments business, Bangladesh has been developing a lot. It has been economically beneficial as well. We hope more prosperity will arrive. For Bangladesh, if the roads and highways are developed more and additional schools and colleges are established then Bangladesh would become an even more developed country.
Quick Fire Questions
What makes you happy?
When I am with everyone in my family, I feel so happy.
What makes you laugh?
When all of us are together having fun. Or when someone slips and falls down, I feel like laughing!
What do you love about Bangladesh?
Cricket is very popular in Bangladesh - the people of Bangladesh really support the team and I love this sport a lot.
What inspires you in life?
My parents’ support for me and where I work is what inspires me.
What is your favorite thing to wear?
My favorite attire is Salwar-Kameez, but I like to wear Sarees too because I really look good in them. I can feel it!
What is your favorite color?
What is your favorite food?
My favorite food is ice cream. I love it so much! Mango is my favourite flavour.