TN secretariat staff worried after 23 of them test COVID-19 positive

The staff has requested the government to reduce the number of employees at work. Test results of a few more IAS officers are awaited.

Published: 04th June 2020 09:31 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th June 2020 09:31 PM   |  A+A-

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami distributing ‘kabasura kudineer’ to police personnel at the Secretariat in Chennai.

Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami distributing ‘kabasura kudineer’ to police personnel at the Secretariat in Chennai. (File Photo| EPS)

By Express News Service

CHENNAI: The staff at the state secretariat want the number of employees at work to be reduced after 23 of their colleagues including eight officers tested positive for COVID-19, according to sources. 

The test results of a few more IAS officers are awaited.

With the number of infected employees rising, the Tamil Nadu Secretariat Association has asked Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami to reduce the number of employees present at offices to 33 per cent. They say physical distancing has become difficult ever since 50 percent of the staff began attending office from June 1.

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Besides, the association has also urged the Chief Minister to exempt employees above the age of 55, pregnant women, lactating mothers, those who have heart and kidney ailments, those suffering from diseases like wheezing and cancer and those who have undergone organ transplant from attending office until the lockdown ends.

The Association president S Peter Anthonysami told The New Indian Express that employees from red zones like Royapuram and other places should be allowed to work from home.

He said thermal scanning must be made mandatory at all entrances to the secretariat from 9 am onwards. Whole-body check-ups should be done for all secretariat employees and immunity boosters like vitamin tablets, and siddha and homeopathy medicines should be given to them.  

Since public transport is not available, sufficient transport facilities should be made available for employees who have to stay back and leave office at late hours, the association said.

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The quarantine period of employees should be treated as special casual leave. 

The Association also said that until COVID-19 is contained fully, public entry into the secretariat should be restricted. 

Since air conditioners are to be avoided, pedestal and wall-mounted fans should be provided in the secretariat  was another demand. More washbasins should be installed on the 10 floors of the Namakkal Kavignar Maligai so that employees can maintain physical distancing while washing hands, the association said.

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