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CU mulls childcare leave

Calcutta University is planning to introduce a provision that will enable teachers and other employees to go on paid leave for taking care of their minor children.

“A committee was set up to restructure the leave rules for teachers and other employees. The panel has proposed childcare leave (see chart), which we have accepted in principle. The proposal will soon be placed before the syndicate for approval,” vice-chancellor Suranjan Das said on Thursday.

The state and central governments have already implemented childcare leave for women.

Das said that unlike in state and Central government organisations, Calcutta University will extend the facility to both male and female teachers and other employees.

The structure of the leave for female employees of the university will be modelled on the system followed by the state government.

For the male staff, the university will follow a different model that the panel is still examining. “A decision will be taken soon,” Das said.

“It’s good that the university has recognised the importance of childcare. The woman employees will benefit more. Many working mothers face problems raising their children and some are forced to quit their jobs. Once the leave is implemented, it will be easier for the woman teachers and other employees to carry on with their careers and look after their minor children simultaneously,” said a woman teacher of the university.

The state government’s rules on childcare leave state that employees with minor children may be granted the leave for a maximum of two years (730 days) during their service period. The employees can avail themselves of the leave for up to two children, till they turn 18.

“The provisions will remain the same for women employees,” said a member of the panel set up to restructure the leave rules.

If a couple work at the university, the childcare leave will be granted to either the husband or the wife, said vice-chancellor Das.

“Childcare leave cannot be granted to both the husband and the wife at the same time if they are working at the university.”