Modinagar sub-divisional magistrate Saumya Pandey, who was appointed the nodal officer for COVID in Ghaziabad, UP, got back to work, a fortnight after giving birth, showing commendable dedication to her duty. Pandey, an IAS officer, was appointed the nodal officer for COVID in July. The civil servant, who said that all pregnant women should take necessary precautions while working during the pandemic, brought her new born to work, as she reported back to duty.
“I am an IAS officer so I have to look after my service. Due to COVID-19, there is a responsibility on all. God has given women the strength to give birth to her child and care for the child. In rural India, women do their household and work related to their livelihood in pregnancy during the near days of delivery and after giving birth they take care of the child and also manage their work and household. Similarly, it is the blessings of God that I am able to do my administrative work with my three-week-old girl child,” Pandey told ANI.
She took leave in September for 22 days and two weeks after the birth of her baby.
“My family has supported me a lot in this. My whole Tehsil and Ghaziabad district administration which is like a family to me gave me support during the pregnancy and post-delivery. District Magistrate and administration’s staff supported me throughout my pregnancy period as well as after my delivery,” she said.
Not many women, however, find it easy to return to work after giving birth. According to a survey by JobsForHer, mothers found it hard restarting their careers after childbirth. 38 per cent women cited access to childcare as the reason, 21 per cent cited lack of self-confidence, 19 per cent said it was outdated skillset, 15 per cent it was due to family bias and 8 per cent it was because of lack of women-friendly company policies. In another study by the World Bank in collaboration with the National Sample Survey, between 2004 and 2012, about 20 million women quit their jobs after childbirth.