Maharashtra, which has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country at over 77,000, has told all government employees that they must report to work at least once in a week while the Covid restrictions are in place or lose a week's salary.
However, the rules are different for those employees who are told to come to office more than once in a week. Such an employee would only lose the salary for the day they remained absent, the notification said.
The order, issued today by Additional Chief Secretary (Finance) Manoj Saunik, will come into effect from June 8, Monday. The coronavirus lockdown in the state will remain in force till June 30 as Covid cases continue to rise at an exponential rate.
The notification came days after the state government issued Covid safety rules to be followed in its offices and asked employees to prepare to return to work, but learnt that many staffers had left for their home towns.
At present, Maharashtra government offices are functioning with 5 per cent staff or 10 persons, whichever is more.
"All employees, except those on sanctioned leave or medical leave, will need to be in office for one day in a week compulsorily. Disciplinary action will be taken by department heads against those who leave the office without permission during the lockdown," the order read.
The notification directs all heads of government department to make a roster for all officers and employees affiliated to them and assign days on which they must report to work.
It warns that if an employee remains absent on the assigned day of work in office, they will lose pay for an entire week.