Published: 23rd April 2021
Karnataka government lecturers hope for work from home option amid second wave of COVID
As per university officials, although exams and classes have been put off, lecturers are required for additional duty such as information dissemination and vaccination drive
With the number of Covid-19 cases on the rise, lecturers from State government universities are hoping to get some relief and work from home.
As per university officials, although exams and classes have been put off, lecturers are required for additional duty such as information dissemination and vaccination drive. Lecturers are also needed to help with preparations for pedagogy during the second wave. "As many as 52 of the permanent lecturers are aged over 45, and at least five have undergone treatment. Some principals are free to interpret the department rules about online classes. We have been asked to visit the college and sign and hold online classes from campus. Exams are not completed yet and the next semester is yet to begin. We are awaiting an option to work from home," said a lecturer from a college affiliated to Kuvempu University.
Vice-Chancellor Veerabhadrappa told TNIE that lecturers are needed on campus for preparations and to help principals. "At least six lecturers have passed away due to Covid-19 since April 15. Work from home option is necessary. All but three of the state universities (a total of 12) have allowed their faculty members to work from home. With the pandemic getting severe, lecturers are hoping for relief, especially as students have got a break till May 4," said Dr Narayan HG, general secretary, Government College Lecturers' Association.
Bengaluru City University Vice-Chancellor Lingaraju told TNIE that lecturers are needed to play a bigger role in these difficult times, apart from teaching and learning. A few universities such as BNU have allowed lecturers to work from home. Vice-Chancellor Kemparaju told TNIE that the fewer on campus the better. Lecturers have been given the work from home option because they are being exposed to the virus during their commute.
VTU Vice-Chancellor Karisiddappa told TNIE that as most of the examinations, except for the first year students, are complete, lecturers are given the work from home for higher semesters. Affiliated colleges are given the freedom to give the same option to their faculty members.
Relief for women, specially abled
Now, specially challenged staff, including the visually and physically challenged, besides young and expecting mothers are exempted from coming to office. This is applicable for all secretariat employees working in Vidhana Soudha, Vikasa Soudha and Legislators's Home.
As per the circular issued by the Karnataka assembly, all staff and officials working in various government departments (except essential services) are allowed to work with 50 per cent working staff. This holds good for all government offices, boards and corporations, semi-government and other offices. Remaining 50 per cent people should be deputed on Covid duty.