UP IAS Officer Soumya Pandey Cancels Six Months Maternity Leave & Resumes Work with Her Infant Amid Coronavirus Pandemic Following the Footsteps of Srijana Gummalla; Twitter Divided

Following the footsteps of the chief of Visakhapatnam’s municipal body, Srijana Gummalla, a UP IAS officer, Soumya Pandey has resumed work three weeks after delivering her child. Cancelling her six months maternity leave, the corona warrior is said to have returned to the office and now a video of her is doing the rounds of the internet.

October 14, 2020

Social Viral

5 min

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Following the footsteps of the chief of Visakhapatnam’s municipal body, Srijana Gummalla, a UP IAS officer, Soumya Pandey has resumed work three weeks after delivering her child. Cancelling her six months maternity leave, the corona warrior is said to have returned to the office and now a video of her is doing the rounds of the internet. The clip has gone viral after Dr Prashanth, a Twitter user, shared it. In the video, you can see her attending the office with her baby amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Soumya Pandey is a sub-divisional magistrate in Uttar Pradesh’s Modinagar and can be seen seated at her desk while carrying her newborn baby in her lap. Soumya said in the video that she received immense support from her family and workplace and was able to resume work because of that. She says, “Responsibilities have increased in the wake of the novel coronavirus pandemic. As far as my child is concerned, God has given enough strength to a woman, who is able to give birth and also take care of the child simultaneously. In India, in most rural set-ups, women work till the last day of their delivery at home, outside, and even in fields. Thereafter, they give birth and also manage household chores apart from raising the child”. She further said, “I am blessed that I am able to continue working with my three-week old infant. My family has really supported me. I got a lot of support from my workplace as well throughout my pregnancy.”

The video was shared with the caption: “@IASassociation Soumya Pandey (SDM Modinagar) didnt availed 06 months maternity leave, joined back office with her infant daughter.” Here’s the video:

While the video says a lot, netizens have mixed reactions. While some cannot stop praising the officer, some believe it is a little unfair to other women who may not be able to keep up with same spirit after giving birth and hence the glorification seem unjustified. Take a look at the reactions:

A Perspective

Why?

The Glorification

Recently, the chief of Visakhapatnam’s municipal body, Srijana Gummalla gathered immense eyeballs for returning to her office in just about three weeks after giving birth to her son. The top officer says it is the call of duty as the country fights the coronavirus pandemic that motivated her to get back to work as soon as possible. The 2013-batch IAS officer, who was seen in photos sitting in her office with the baby cradled in her arms, won her high praise on social media.

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