Principal secretary of IT department Jayesh Ranjan said that employees who have expressed reservations about resuming work from offices are “extremely insensitive” to the misery of others.
Reacting to news reports which quoted him stating that the State government wants people to return to workplaces, IT employees had expressed a range of concerns such as fear of contracting COVID-19 and difficulty of managing responsibility of their children as schools stay shut. Some employees have even shifted to their native place and are working from there.
Speaking on the sidelines of inauguration of a 50-bed ICU ward at Osmania General Hospital on Sunday, Mr Ranjan said that livelihoods of several sections of society depend on reopening of offices. “If they refuse to come to office when everyone else is going to office and when everything is safe, I will say they are extremely insensitive to the misery of others. They are only looking after their health, their children’s health, and the fact that they can relax in their homes. Livelihoods of taxi drivers, catering and security guys, and all other service providers are dependent on functioning of offices,” he said, mincing no words.
The senior official said that he couldn’t have pushed people to take risks during the first and second waves of the COVID-19 pandemic. But when the risk has become literally ‘zero’ now, he said people are not realising the havoc they are unleashing on others and that it is rather unfortunate and insensitive.
The concerns of IT employees not wishing to go back to office in a hurry include the fear of infection. “I am scared of contracting COVID and spreading it to my family members. The concern remains even after taking two doses of vaccine against it. My family has cut down all non-essential works outside home, which means no visits to gyms or public spaces. Why risk it all by going to office? My one-year-old child will not be able to communicate to us properly if she has any of the COVID symptoms,” said an IT employee on the condition of anonymity.
Many others shared this opinion.
Apart from the infection concerns, they stressed that their work output is the same or has even increased while working from home.
However, there is another section that believes it is time to return to IT campuses. Sai Kumar Gujjula, an employee, said that he works in sales division of a company and not having in-person interaction affects his work. “We gain better understanding on interacting in-person. And the opportunity of networking with colleagues, seniors, and others comes down if we rely entirely on the virtual medium. We get stuck at the career and aspiration ladder. Work-life balance went for a toss while working from home,” he added.
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