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Odishatv Bureau

New Delhi: The Central Government on Monday said that biometric attendance will continue to be suspended during the fourth phase of the lockdown as it issued guidelines on the regulation of attendance in government offices.

Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions said that all officers of the level of Deputy Secretary and above shall attend office on all working days.

"Biometric attendance shall continue to be suspended until further orders. For regulating the attendance of officers and staff below the level of Deputy Secretary, all Heads of the Department shall prepare a roster so as to ensure that 50 per cent of officers and staff attend office on every alternate day," the guidelines added.

Those officers or staff who are not required to attend office on a particular day shall work from home and should be available on telephone and electronic means of communications at all times.

"All Heads of the Department shall also ensure that the 50 per cent officers and staff who attend office observe staggered timings: 1st shift - 9 a.m. to 5.30 p.m., 2nd shift - 9.30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and 3rd shift - 10 a.m. to 6.30 p.m."

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) released a fresh order for the states and Union Territories (UTs) instructing them “not to dilute” its guidelines issued for the lockdown 4.0 that began from Monday for two more weeks till May 31. The guidelines were about the opening up of the red zones to boost the economic activities and permit transportation to balance the fight against COVID-19 thereby limiting the economic damage.

In the order, issued by the Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla to the Chief Secretaries of all states and UTs, it is mentioned that states and UTs cannot dilute restrictions imposed in the MHA guidelines and can only make them stricter based on the local level assessment and the Health Ministry guidelines.

The order was issued on Sunday, soon after the MHA issued the guidelines for lockdown 4.0 to lower the spread of the deadly pandemic which so far has claimed 3,029 deaths and infected over 96,000 people across the country.

The MHA on Sunday issued revised guidelines regarding the lockdown restrictions, to contain the COVID-19 virus with “widespread relaxations given in the restrictions”.

Under the new guidelines effective from Monday, states and UTs would now “delineate the red, orange and green zones, taking into consideration the revised guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) on Sunday”.


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