Cashing in on five-day week and a restricted holiday, the state secretariat employees can avail nine days’ leave at a stretch this festive season and unwind far away from madding crowd.
Before Durga Puja, the last working day at the secretariat would be October 19 (Friday). Its employees have the option of returning to office straight on October 29 after Durga Puja and Id-uz-Zoha, provided they avail the restricted holiday on October 25 on account of Ashwin Shukl Ekadashi.
A state government employee can avail three restricted leaves in a year.
An official of the education department said: “As there will be nine off days at a stretch, I am planning to visit Delhi where my son lives. After several years, we will get nine holidays on the trot.”
The secretariat will remain closed on October 20 and 21 because they are Saturday and Sunday. Durga Puja holidays will be from Monday to Wednesday (October 22 to 24).
It will be closed on Friday, October 26, on account of Id-uz-Zoha, and on October 27 and October 28 because they are weekly off days. The employees taking a leave on Thursday, marked as a restricted holiday in the official calendar, can be off to some tourist spots or hometowns.
R.S. Singh, another official of the education department, said: “Employees plan their vacation just after getting the list of holidays. As we can be on leave for nine days at one go, several of us will go out of the town. The secretariat will sport a deserted look from October 20 to 28.”
The state government employees at offices other than the secretariat have six-day week. They would get six off days’ leave at a stretch this festive season, provided they avail the restricted holiday on October 25. Their last working day before Durga Puja would be October 20 (Saturday).
The bank employees would get fewer holidays. Their two-day Puja vacation would be from October 23.
After working for a day on Thursday, October 25, they would get a leave on October 26 on account of Id-uz-Zoha. The next day being a Saturday, banks would be open half-day.
State Bank of India general manager (public relations) Umesh Mishra said: “Banks are like departments under essential services. Thus, we have fewer holidays compared to the other government departments.”
He said several employees had applied for casual leave on October 22 and 25. But they can avail casual leave only on one of these days. Else, the two-day Puja vacation would be counted as leaves and not vacation.
The bank official said holidays would not affect online and ATM transactions because they are replenished every day.
Mishra said: “According to the RBI guidelines, we receive ATM report every evening from the banks concerned on the status of ATMs. As a result, there will be no hiccups during the holidays.”
The private sector banks would have the same holiday schedule as the nationalised banks.