MUMBAI: Concerned about the surge in Covid cases among Mantralaya staffers in the last one week, chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on Tuesday directed the chief secretary to include them in the frontline workers’ list and ensure they are given the vaccination on priority.
Thackeray also asked the chief secretary to prepare a plan to stagger the work timings of departments in two shifts and examine the feasibility of how many can function at full capacity if allowed to work from home. “We will start work on this innovative method in which there is no compromise on work and the risk of Covid-19 infection will also be less,” said Thackeray, after the meeting with the Maharashtra State Gazetted Officers’ Confederation. Mantralaya staffers will undergo temperature checks every day and those who show symptoms will have to take antigen tests, the CM added.
Officials said Thackeray had pushed for a national policy on staggered work timings during the recently held Niti Aayog meeting with PM Narendra Modi.
G D Kulthe, advisor of the confederation, said as on Tuesday, 75 staffers, including officers, have tested Covid positive. “There are nearly 7,000 employees in Mantralaya building, New Administrative Building and Vidhan Bhavan. If vaccinated on priority, it will reduce risk at the state headquarters,” he said.
The confederation also demanded a cap on the number of visitors to Mantralaya and insisted that those allowed entry should follow all Covid protocols. “The CM said he will take a decision regarding visitor entry in a day or two,” said Kulthe.