The significant aspect of resumption of office services on Monday following an 83-day lockdown is - it helps citizens and organisations to have various works done through office services that were backlogged during the lockdown period. The government might have taken the decision to reopen offices from the first day of current month of Asar because it is the last month of Nepali fiscal year and is a time for many organisations, enterprises, citizens and households to pay taxes and make payments to the different offices and departments. The relaxation of the restriction, on the other hand, must have relieved and delighted citizens and many organisations because they would be able to have their works done towards the end of the fiscal year.
While reopening the offices, the government has announced several measures that are aimed at managing staff forces as well as compelling the employees and service seekers to adhere to the coronavirus health safety protocol. The much-awaited decision has allowed offices to provide their services by managing their staff members in two shifts- from 8 am to 1 pm and 1 pm to 6 pm. The offices must deploy the employees in two shifts by halving their staff numbers for each shift. Every office employee and service seeker must follow the safety protocol that included examination of body temperature, hand washing or sanitising in front of the every office premises. Installation of separate service counters, compulsory PPEs to the front desk staff and provision to provide quick services to the staff or employee who fall sick at the office premises are other requirements for offices. Likewise, the employees who must be wearing masks and gloves must maintain safe distance from each of their colleague and service seekers. To avoid the rush of service seekers at this critical time of virus spread, the offices can implement quota system for providing maximum services in a day by day basis analysing the flow of the service seekers. In the meantime, the government authority believes that the offices should encourage service seekers to take advantage of online services instead of rushing to the offices.
The resumption of services at all offices has indeed come as the government's measures to ease the prolonged lockdown during when the absence of vital office services had given many enterprises, organisations and people a very hard time. They were unable to avail of office services owing to restrictions that were put in place after coronavirus fear gripped the nation. But with the government changing the lockdown modality and reopening the country gradually, people have heaved a sigh of relief. The resumption of offices coincided with the reopening of the shops, trade, commerce and other services that are expected to get the country back on economic track has indeed jubilated every entity and citizen of the country. However, one needs to be reminded of an undeniable fact at this testing time that despite the resumption of offices and other services and entities, the fear of coronavirus has not yet subsided in the country. For that reason, each citizen requires adhering to the COVID-19 health safety protocol while availing of services at all offices and entities. No one, neither an office employee nor a service seeker, should throw caution to wind and raise the risk of spreading the contagion.