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In Pune, police teams to enforce work from home mandate for pvt firms

The order intended to limit the spread of Covid-19, has been issued under the Disaster Management Act 2005, and action against the violators will be taken under Section 188 of the IPC which pertains to disobedience to order duly promulgated by a public servant

Updated: Mar 19, 2020 16:12 IST

By Yogesh Joshi and Steffy Thevar,

To ensure compliance of order, police teams in Pune and Pimpri-Chichwad have been formed. (HT PHOTO)

In an order issued on Wednesday, the district administration has asked all the private firms involved in non-essential services to facilitate work from home option for its staff or face action.

The order intended to limit the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus), has been issued under the Disaster Management Act 2005, and action against the violators will be taken under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) which pertains to disobedience to order duly promulgated by a public servant.

The order is applicable mainly to those firms having more than five working staff and is involved in non-essential as well as non-manufacturing units.

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To ensure compliance of order, police teams in Pune and Pimpri-Chichwad have been formed.



“These teams will physically search the offices of private firms to check the implementation of the order on mandatory work from home. We will be harsh against those companies not following the diktat,” said district collector Naval Kishore Ram.

According to Ram, the administration was prompted to issue the order after many firms were found violating the earlier directives of encouraging for work from home for its staff. The order has come against the backdrop of complaints from some professionals that their management has been forcing them to present in office.

Pune has a large number of employees working at the various IT parks, including Hinjewadi IT park, Kharadi IT park and Magarpatta IT park.

Ram said, “The administration has invoked the Disaster Management Act 2005, and under that Act, I have issued orders to all private companies that there should not be more than five persons working at the office premises at one time. All the companies will have to abide by the order.”

Gathering of more than five people restricted: district collector

The district collector, Naval Kishore Ram, issued fresh orders on Wednesday restricting any social gatherings or functions where more than five people could come together. These instructions have now been imposed under the special powers given to the district collector under the Disaster Management Act 2005 and Maharashtra Police Act 1951. The fresh orders restricts the gatherings of five or more than five people in public places which includes training, camps, private tuition and also government meetings, unless for important issues.

The order states, in Pune district, be it private or public place, any function including cultural and religious, festivals, celebrations, entertainment programmes, sports and other competitions and workshops, camps, training centres, meetings, protests and tour events where five or more than five people are likely to gather will be restricted.

The order would not be applicable to railways stations, bus stands, public or semi-public offices, essential services like hospitals and medical services, cremation, grocery stores, canteens and mess for students only, competitive exams and critical national and international infrastructure projects important for the country and news channels.

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