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Shri.Mohanan Narayanan is the author of this article. He works as an Office Superintendent in a subordinate office under Ministry of Textiles in Mumbai.
We all know Government vide its office Memorandum No.13018/2/2008-Estt (L) dated the 11th September 2008 (click here to get the order)has introduced the Child Care Leave to the women central government employees. Women employees having minor children (below 18 years) are entitled to get Child Care Lave (CCL) for a maximum period of two years ( i.e. 730 days ) during their entire service for taking care of two eldest surviving children. C.C.L can also be availed for third year as leave not due without production of medical certificate. As clarified by the Government subsequently, the C.C.L can be availed in three occasions in a year and the minimum quantum of leave availed should not be less than 15 days. This is a good initiative to protect the interest of working women employees of Government of India.
This scheme brought cheerfulness among young and middle aged women employees, but at the same time male employees who are equally struggling for taking care of their children in certain situations have been let down.
In the changed scenario, both the husband and wife are equally responsible for managing children including health, education and overall growth of their children. If both husband and wife are working, then the responsibility of husband in overall management family may be more or less same to than of wife.
It is not possible to list all the situations where a male employee’s contingencies should be given equal footing as far as child care is concerned. Some of them are
- Spouse is employed in a private organization, where there is a limitation in availing leave, concession etc.
- A widower or a husband who got separated and happened to be living with his children.
- Spouse is unable to take care of children due to her ill-health.
- Spouse is unable to manage the children especially the grown up in studies, due to lack of required knowledge , education, managing power etc.
It is pertinent to mention here that the male government servant with less than two surviving children are entitled to get Paternity Leave for a period of 15 days during the confinement of his wife i.e. up to 15 days before or up to six month from the date of delivery of child . Similarly, the male employees should also get CCL to look after their children.
In a nutshell, the responsibility of male government servant in taking care of their children in studies, health etc. is in no way lesser than that of his spouse, but as far as Child Care Leave is concerned he gets unequal treatment from the Government. He certainly deserves for grant of CCL at par with the female employees.