Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Memorandum submitted to ED(P) on problems of FEMALE OFFICERS in LIC

Our lady representatives in Mumbai Smt Leena Ghatpande, Smt. Trupti Bramhe, Smt. Neeta Prabhavalkar, Smt. Saroj Kurdukar along with our WZ joint secretary Shri Manish Patankar submitted a memorandum on 'problems faced by female officers in LIC' to the ED(Personnel) Smt D. Vijayalakshmi on Friday, 26th February 2010 & demanded a one-day long workshop for discussions on the issues raised in the memorandum. The ED(P) assured that the issues would be discussed shortly.
 Kindly also note that while we are raising the issues of female officers, we also acknowledge that officers as a whole have to face a lot of problems. Many problems raised in this memorandum are common to both male as well as female officers. However, there are certain problems peculiar to female officers which we wanted to focus. The text of the memorandum is reproduced, here-in-below.
Ganesh Kamath, GS, NOINO.

The Executive Director (Personnel), L.I.C.of India.

Respected Madam,

Re: Problems of Female officers.

As your good self is aware, the number of female officers in LIC is increasing day by day. We feel that the female officers are a distinct segment as compared to the male officers, each one having different set of problems in addition to the common ones. With this in mind, a meet of lady members of NOINO was arranged on 9th Jan.2010 at Yogakshema in Mumbai. The subject of discussion was “Problems faced by female officers while working in LIC”.
About 65 lady officers from various branches, divisional offices of Mumbai and Thane as also from Western Zonal Office and Central Office participated in the meet.
The discussions continued over 2 & half hours. The session was quite interactive and various problems and suggestions were put forth. The discussions were animated and enthusiasm as well as the woes poured out from all the sides which reflected the harsh ground realities. We have categorized these problems into female officers’ problems; Common problems & some of the suggestions:-

Female Officers’ problems

Late-sitting- This has become a never ending and an everyday issue, in all branches & in many departments of divisional offices. The employees are also required to sit overnight during year end closing in addition to the daily late-sitting. Though this is a problem common to all officers, we are concerned with the security of lady officers and non-availability of transportation after late sitting.
Suggested solution- (1) Sufficient recruitment of Class III/IV employees,
timely closure of cash counters, at least 1 day gap between registration and
(2) In exigencies, whenever a lady officer is required to stay till late hours in
office, there should be proper arrangement to leave the officer at her
residence safely.

Problems faced by lady officers in Satellite branches :- Sometimes a lone
lady officer is posted in satellite branch. This poses security problems. There
is no sub-staff or Class III employees.
Suggested solution: Complete overhaul of Satellite branches needed with
adequate staff of all cadres and provision of security. Class I officers should
not be entrusted the job of cashiers.

Non availability of rest rooms for lady employees :- Even in the prestigious building of Yogakshema there is no restroom for lady employees leave alone in branches & buildings.
Suggested solution: - The Corporation should show sensitiveness & provide
restrooms to the lady employees forthwith in all the buildings of the

Common Problems

Some of the common problems (i.e. faced both by male as well as female
Officers) are listed below. In most of the problems we have suggested
solutions too:

Non-availability of emergency medical aid :- Here again, even in
Yogakshema, the employees have to fend for themselves if somebody is
seriously ill.
Suggested solution: Arrangement of doctor on call should be made in all
offices of the Corporation.

Accommodation on transfer / posting: The officers posted outside their Division or Zone on promotion are not provided with timely accommodation. The problem is more acute when the officer happens to be a lady.
Suggested solution: (1) Postings on promotion should also be linked with
availability of accommodation for officers.
(2) There is acute shortage of staff- /officers’ quarters at Divisional and Zonal
headquarters. There is need of owning / constructing more officers’ quarters
at these places.

Unmanageable workload and insufficient staff in most of the branches.
There is a shortage of sub-staff mainly in branches.
Suggested solution: More than one officer should be posted at least in the
departments like PS/Claims, NB of all branches. There should be induction of
fresh blood. In this respect, we demand that at least one full time sub staff &
two new recruit assistants should be posted to each department. This should
not be viewed as Costs but as an investment to provide better service to the
policyholders & to further improve our image.

Difficulties in handling more than one department in branches: & also in
higher offices where reporting is required to be done to different HODs.
Suggested solution: Each officer should be given charge of only one

Unhygienic conditions and shabby ambience in non renovated branches:
Suggested solution: Modernization of non-renovated branches should be
undertaken on priority basis. Basic amenities and better working conditions
should be provided in all branches where modernization cannot be
undertaken for reasons beyond control.

Due to delay in promotion rounds Officers are required to manage the
department without sufficient staff after each promotion round for a long
Suggested solution: Time lag between promotion rounds should be
reduced to the minimum.

Even snacks are not provided in many branches for late sitting citing
reasons of insufficient budget. This is really disgusting.
Suggested solution: (1) Staff regulations should be amended & Class I Officers should be paid overtime.
(2) Pending this demand a late sitting allowance of Rs.3000 p.m. should be paid.
(3) There should be strict instructions for observance of this minimum humanitarian courtesy.

8. Induction training is usually given after a long time.
Suggested solution: Timely and updated training covering recent changes
should be imparted.

9. Late sitting due to Back up in branches:-
Suggested solution: - NOINO has long back conducted a survey of 257
branches in the country over this issue & suggested various solutions in its
comprehensive 12 page report. Most of the suggestions including Centralised
back-up were accepted but there has been an inordinate delay in implementing
the same. We demand that the centralized back-up process should be
expedited to give relief to officers working in branches.

10. Parent Branch officers are required to wait for Satellite office to finish their
Suggested Solution: There should be independent server at satellite office so
that under such circumstances data can be merged with parent branch’s data
the next morning.

11. CR’s of officers transferred or posted outside division on promotion are not
sent in time in some places thereby extending their outstation stay.

12. Date of extension of closing is not communicated in time.
Suggested solution: In the first instance, closing date should not be
extended at all. In case any such situation arises, ground level offices should
be informed well within time.

13. In many offices officers are bound to sit late on Saturdays thereby the
officers cannot avail the benefit of half-day.
Suggested solution: NOINO has been continuously demanding Five days
week which will also help in reduction in cost on a/c of electricity, water etc.

14. AAO’s/AO’s are required to travel by train for tours/ other official work
outside their divisions resulting in loss of time and energy.
Suggested solution: All officers should be allowed air travel while on official
visits outside their division.

Other suggestions

Shutters at cash counters.
Recreation facilities/ Yoga Classes.
Arrangement of vehicle at least on closing days.

We are sure that you are well aware of the gravity & the volume of the problems faced by the Class I Officers in LIC, more so by the female officers and also of the fact that in spite of all these problems, all the officers as well as other employees put their best/ slog at the cost of their homes and health to take OUR CORPORATION ahead. As such to expect a little bit of sensitiveness from the management towards the problems of their employees, should not be an high expectation.
We are sure that you empathize with our problems as you too are a female officer. We, therefore, feel that a systemic & a systematic approach is needed to arrive at practical solutions on these problems. We sincerely feel that the practical solutions to the above problems are urgently needed to further improve the working of the Corporation. We, therefore, demand a full day workshop with the representatives of NOINO so that we can put our heads together & identify the solutions.

Yours faithfully,

Female representatives of NOINO:

Leena Ghatpande, AO/CRM/CO

Neeta Prabhavalkar, AO/CLIA/CO

Trupti Bramhe, AO/MKTG/CO

Saroj Kurdukar, AAO/P & GS/MDO1

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