Officials in the Directorate of Printing and Stationery are anxious for their own safety after all staff were ordered to report to their office for work yesterday and tomorrow in expectation of a visit by two cabinet ministers.
According to sources, the order to staff was signed by E D R Tariang, the acting Director.
The staff are wary that 100 percent attendance in office during the Covid-19 pandemic makes a “mockery of social distancing norms” and is a tremendous risk to their health and welfare.
A whistleblower in the directorate informed the press today that Health Department protocols went out the window after all staff were ordered to report to work on Saturday for a cleaning drive ahead “obviously to welcome … the masters”, ie the two cabinet ministers and top bureaucrats.
The whistleblower questioned whether demanding 100 percent attendance from the staff was cleared with experts or the health authorities, adding, “One can imagine the degree of exposure while performing the mass cleaning drive.”
When ordinary citizens are pulled up by the state for violations of Covid protocols, the whistleblower questioned how the government could carry out such a “willful and irresponsible act”.
It was also questioned why the government had not reinstated S R Mark as Director even after being ordered by the High Court of Meghalaya to do so.
It may be mentioned that Meghalaya government offices are presently functioning with lower strength due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Government offices in the State are functioning at 100 per cent strength for group A and B officers and 33 per cent strength for group C and D staff.