Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah on Tuesday issued a directive to officials in district and taluk centres making it mandatory for all officials to work from their respective offices, instead of working from home.
During a meeting with District Commissioners and Zilla Panchayat chief executive officers at the Vidhana Soudha conference hall on Tuesday, the chief minister said, “Officials in district and taluk centres should not work from home. Do not work from home. The government will not tolerate people suffering due to this.”
The chief minister said that it is essential for officials to be accessible and responsive, regardless of whether the caller is calling from the chief minister’s office, ministers, MLAs, or the general public. “There are also complaints from the public, MLAs, and ministers that officials do not respond to phone calls. This is unacceptable. You should respond to calls, whether from the chief minister’s office, ministers, MLAs, or the general public,” he said.
Siddaramaiah further emphasised that harassment of farmers by private lenders and banks will not be tolerated. “At least 251 farmer suicide cases have been reported in the state, of which 174 have been resolved. The remaining cases should be resolved promptly, and compensation should be distributed. Delays in this regard are unacceptable,” he stated.
The chief minister suggested that private money lenders should be monitored after a drought-like situation has been observed in the state. “It has been observed that applications coming to the courts of Tehsildar, Sub-Divisional Officer, and District Commissioners are pending for more than five years. If a case is not settled even after five years, it means that proper action is not being taken,” he said.
“Justice delayed is justice denied. The longer the delay, the greater the opportunity for corruption. The delay itself is a form of corruption,” Siddaramaiah said, adding that the tehsildar should dispose of any application within three months. “There is a long delay in the settlement of appeals coming to the Sub-Divisional officers. It should be resolved within six months at most. District Collectors [DC] should resolve cases within a year,” he added.
The chief minister also expressed concerns about the unavailability of doctors and the practice of para-medical personnel prescribing medications instead of qualified doctors. He directed doctors to remain stationed at their respective centres and effectively address the healthcare needs of the people. “Doctors should stay at their headquarters and respond to problems of people,” he said.