June 07, 2019: Every fourth Saturday of the month will soon be a holiday for State government employees, besides the holiday they already have on second Saturdays. Their casual leave will be reduced from 15 to 10 in a year, while the other existing general holidays remain intact. There is also no proposal to extend work hours on other working days.
However, a Cabinet decision to this effect, taken on June 6, Thursday, would not be implemented this year as the government has already drawn a calendar of working days and holidays for 2019. Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, who presided over the Cabinet meeting, would take a final call, said Rural Development and Panchayat Raj Minister Krishna Byre Gowda.
The decision was taken after studying the five-day work week in more than a dozen States in the country. There was a demand from the employees for a holiday on fourth Saturday of every month, said minister Gowda. Nationalised banks have already declared holiday for its staff on second and fourth Saturdays.
The government, which has reduced casual leave from 15 to 10, has not taken any decision to scrap holidays for government staff on jayantis (birth anniversaries) of prominent personalities. The Cabinet has also not decided on extending the hours of office work during the rest of the days to compensate for the holiday on fourth Saturday.
Earlier, a Cabinet sub-committee was constituted to look into the issue of whether or not government employees should have a five-day work week. Minister Gowda pointed out that the Sixth Pay Commission for government staff had mooted the idea of five-day week or holiday on fourth Saturday.
Sources said this decision would save a lot of money to the State exchequer since it would reduce consumption of electricity, water and fuel used by employees.