While infantile behaviour from the nation’s keepers in Parliament is customary nowadays, it’s not every day that you see a bunch of municipal workers being given lessons in punctuality in the manner they are imparted to truant school children. Sagar Naik, the mayor of Navi Mumbai who was re-elected to his post earlier this week, took almost 50 employees to task for coming late to work yesterday, making them stand outside the headquarters for an hour. The reporting time for NMMC employees is 10 am. A tad bit late himself, Naik reached the headquarters at 10.10 am and stood sentinel at the main door.
He then started stopping latecomers from entering in the building. As the clock ticked, latecomers tried to sneak in unnoticed, only to be stopped short by their top boss, who proceeded to organise the errant workers into two queues of shame. They were only allowed to enter at 11.15 am, but there was more in store. Naik then asked the administration to take action against them.
“I have been receiving complaints from corporators that our employees come to the office quite late, which in turn affects public work. So I decided to check out the ground reality. I found out today that a significant number of employees are coming late to the office. I ordered the administration to take strict action against these employees, so work for the people is not affected,” said Naik.
The municipal commissioner Bhaskar Wankhede also emerged from his office after learning of the disciplinary action being taken by the mayor. He then decided to hit where it would hurt the most, saying, “We will take proper action against these employees if they are late again in future. The employees’ attendance will be linked with their salary.”
Naik also inspected the engineering and administration departments to evaluate the presence of employees. He was shocked to see only six to seven employees manning the engineering department, as late as 11.15 am. Sources said that employees usually sneak out of office by 5 pm, even though their working hours extend till 5.45 pm.
However, all employees stayed beyond their hours till 6 pm yesterday, afraid that Naik would come patrolling again. At present, NMMC has two biometric machines but hardly any employees use them.