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Saswat Singhdeo

Bhubaneswar: Despite rescheduling of the working hours, Odisha government employees of various departments seem to be blatantly flouting the new timings.

A reality check by OTV at the Heads of Departments building revealed that most of the employees are reaching late to their respective offices.

In 20 departments, including the Department of Medical Education & Training and Directorate of Public Health, only a handful of employees were present at around 10:25 AM during the reality check, while the workday begins at 10 AM.

When asked, the latecomers complained that due to traffic congestion it becomes difficult for them to reach office on time.

“Traffic congestion is one of the major reasons why we fail to reach office on time,” said an employee.

On June 22, the State government had rescheduled the working hours in government offices from 10 AM to 5.30 PM with half an hour lunch break from 1.30 PM to 2 PM to improve efficiency of administration and make it more citizen-centric. The State government had also declared fourth Saturday of every month holiday.

Amid such continued indiscipline, the Cooperation Department has issued an order to take disciplinary action against employees who are late to the office.

Earlier yesterday, the Higher Education minister, Minister Arun Sahoo made a surprise visit to the department and had acknowledged that many employees come late to the office. However, officials have blamed the faulty elevator in the building behind their delayed arrival.

“Only one elevator is working here and there is no proper arrangement so we are forced to wait in a queue. Even if we come early to office, we always end up getting late,” said an official.

“As per the existing rules, increment and promotion of the employees can be stopped for coming late to the office,” said Bibhuti Bhushan Patnaik, Registrar of Odisha Cooperative Societies.


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