Work from home might sound like a cakewalk. On the contrary, in Hyderabad, WFH has turned into a bane for those employed in the IT and ITES sectors. Many have developed chronic illnesses, hypertension and other ailments such as kidney stones. World Health Organisation (WHO) has released a report stating that hundreds of thousands of people died of overwork across the globe.
According to one mid-level employee in cybercity, he has developed severe back pain ever since he started working from home. He has been popping pills for the past year, and now he cannot take more pills. He simply has to bear the pain. He says WFH is a pain when compared to working in an office as one used to get breaks, got to play games and interact with fellow employees face to face. He says he had applied for leave, and that hasn’t been sanctioned as yet.
As per the city-based Forum of IT Professionals (ForIT), there could have been many such deaths in the city too. They say most are put in cardiac arrest or other chronic illness caused by stress.
It is said that IT professionals in the city work for more than 10 hours a day and five days a week. While work can cause stress, overwork can escalate it. Another employee with a software time says she cannot make time for her family due to extended work hours and meetings early in the morning and late in the night.
According to a doctor in a corporate firm, many of the employees who returned to work post first wave complained of various ailments though none of them was infected with COVID.
The proposed new labour codes provide companies with the flexibility of a 4-day workweek. The employees will have to put in 48 hours of work per week. But many feel such a law is a mere joke in Hyderabad, where the majority of the companies are not implementing it.