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Centre exempts pregnant women, Divyang employees from attending office amid Covid-19 surge

However, the Minister said, the officials/staff who are not attending the office and are working from home shall remain available on telephone and other electronic means of communications at all times.

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New Delhi: Amid the Covid-19 surge in the country, the Central government on Sunday decided to exempt pregnant women and Divyang employees from attending office physically, giving them the facility of work from home.

Informing about the guidelines issued by the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) in the wake of third wave of the pandemic, Union Minister of State; MoS PMO Dr Jitendra Singh said all officials and staff living in the Containment Zone shall also be exempted from coming to office till the time Containment Zone is denotified.

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“The physical attendance of government servants below the level of Under Secretary has been restricted to 50 per cent of the actual strength and the remaining 50 percent shall work from home. Roster will be prepared accordingly by all the departments concerned,” the Minister added.

However, the Minister said, the officials/staff who are not attending the office and are working from home shall remain available on telephone and other electronic means of communications at all times.

In view of the rapid spread of the infection, Singh said that a DoPT O.M. has been issued with the advice that the official meetings shall be conducted as far as possible through video-conferencing.

Similarly, personal meetings with visitors are to be avoided, unless absolutely necessary, he said.

In order to avoid overcrowding in the office premises, the Minister said the officials/staff shall follow staggered timings- (a) 9 am to 5.30 pm and (b) 10 am to 6.30 pm.

Meanwhile, the DoPT has advised all the officers/staff to ensure strict compliance of Covid-appropriate behaviour, that is, frequent washing of hands/sanitisation, wearing face mask/face cover and observing social distancing all the time.

Proper cleaning and sanitisation of the workplace, particularly frequently touched surfaces, may also be ensured.

“The guidelines issued as per the DoPT OM will remain in force till January 31, 2022. In the meantime, regular review will be carried out from time to time and the guidelines may be revised accordingly depending on the situation,” he added.

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