With a lockdown in force, empty offices are currently the norm across the country. And while most employees are working from home, it’s an extraordinarily painful time for those who are retiring during this period. The 21-day lockdown has made their retirement bereft of the usual sendoff ceremonies and the farewell reminscences.
Keeping in view the sentiments of the retiring officials, Rajya Sabha Secretary General Desh Deepak Verma permitted a unique convention on Tuesday, allowing the Rajya Sabha Secretariat officials to bid farewell to the three retiring officers via video conferencing.
The Secretary General was joined by others from the Secretariat, leaving the retiring officials emotional.
The three officials, Additional Directors Madhu Rajput, Shefali Gupta and Assistant Executive Officer Yogamber Singh Nayal retired on March 31.
Recalling her memories of working at the Rajya Sabha Secretariat, Shefali Gupta thanked her colleagues for all the support and cooperation she received from them in her 40 years of service. She also thanked the Secretary General saying that while the lockdown prevented her from meeting everyone, she was extremely humbled by this sendoff.
The Secretary General also met about 44 Secretariat officials through video conferencing and appreciated the work being done from home. The initiative was welcomed by all, as they said talking to their peers had helped them de-stress. The Rajya Sabha Secretriat has decided now that the video conferencing will be a weekly affair.
In a lighter vein, Secretary General Desh Deepak Verma said these events could be a “virtual party” for them wherein he could interact with their family members and inquire about their well being as well.
Rajya Sabha Secretary General Desh Deepak Verma also informed officials that so far 53 Rajya Sabha MPs had agreed to make contributions from their MPLADS Fund to the PM CARES fund. Secretariat officials have also agreed to donate at least a day’s salary to the fund.
In the coming week, on April 3, some officials of the Notice Office and Table Office will be present at work to conduct formalities of oath-taking of several newly elected Rajya Sabha MPs.