Work from home
Amid the corona virus COVID-19 scare, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Tuesday stated that work from home for the IT companies will be extended till July 31, adding that 85 per cent work of the IT is being done from home. Earlier, the work from home was scheduled to end on April 30. Prasad held a discussion, via video conferencing, with the state IT Ministers and officials.© Provided by Zee News
The minister also said that a lot of relaxations were given for work from home and IT Secretary, Communication Secretary, and Postal Secretary gave presentations of their departments citing requirements and expectations by the Centre from the state departments. Norms for work from home have been relaxed. “We will aspire that work from home should become a new norm,” said Prasad while asking the participants to encourage young entrepreneurs investing in new startups.
Speaking to media persons via video conference, Prasad said that Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi has requested to develop an app where the best strategies of all states to contain the pandemic will be shared. “We have accepted this suggestion. I have asked the National E-Governance Division (NEGD) & National Informatics Centre (NIC) to prepare an app. Both NEGD and NIC have agreed to develop an app in three days,” said Prasad.
The Minister praised the department for making the Arogya Setu app a success, adding that the app has to be taken forward. A proposal was made in the meeting to tag the e-pass with the app and was agreed upon, stated the Law minister. All Aarogya Setu apps will be linked at district levels. “Arogya Setu app has become very popular as well,” the minister added. He also lauded the Postal Department for undertaking social service and digital services like digital payments and wished that states would use the vast network of our postal department in the country.
Prasad also asked state governments to treat the pandemic as an opportunity and prepare for the forthcoming boom in the electronics manufacturing sector. He also said that the “anger against China can be used towards benefit for India`s manufacturing sector”, adding that major opportunity in the electronic manufacturing sector is likely to open up for India soon.
The minister praised various departments for their services during the lockdown. “I want to make an appeal to Chief Ministers, Deputy Chief Ministers and Ministers that age for electronic manufacturing is set to come in India. The condition in China is such and considering people`s anger against China, I am sure the opportunity of India is going to come. The ministry has given incentives and I would like to state that cooperation by states will play a crucial role in it,” stated the minister.
In March, the DoT relaxed certain norms for OSPs till April 30 to facilitate work from home (WFH) amid the coronavirus pandemic. This included exemptions in requirement of security deposit and agreement for WFH facility for OSPs (primarily IT and IT-enabled services companies). Earlier, companies were not allowed to connect office Virtual Private Network to home infrastructure, a rule that was subsequently relaxed in view of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Given that work-from-home is going to be a new normal for some time, the decision to extend timelines is a welcome move. It will help companies plan their return-to-office strategy in a phased manner. Now that the deadline is being extended to July, companies too can plan their workforce returning to the office, in the same way,” Nasscom Senior Vice-President and Chief Strategy Officer Sangeeta Gupta told PTI. Currently, over 90 per cent of the IT workforce is working from home and only those performing critical functions are going to offices.
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