Amidst the rising coronavirus and COVID-19 concerns in India, all Companies and Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) have been strongly advised to put in place an immediate plan to implement the ‘Work from Home’ policy. This policy is to be implemented as a temporary measure till 31st March 2020 to combat with COVID-19 outbreak. Work from Home policy shall be implemented in organization’s headquarters and field offices to the maximum extent possible. They have been further advised to conduct all meetings remotely through video conference or other electronic / telephonic / computerized means.
The advisory states that the Ministry of Corporate Affairs has relaxed the rules with respect to board meetings. The Ministry has dispensed with the necessity of holding physical meetings on matters relating to approval of financial statements, board report, restructuring etc. till 30th June 2020 considering the global outbreak of coronavirus. They are further examining any other relaxations under the Companies Act, 2013, that may be necessitated on account of COVID-19.
The Ministry is also developing and deploying a simple web based form named CAR (Company Affirmation of Readiness towards COVID-19). CAR will be deployed on 23rd March 2020 and all the companies/LLPs are requested to report their compliance instantly.
Earlier this week, the Ministry of Health also issued an ‘advisory on social distancing‘. In the advisory the health ministry proposed both public and private organizations to implement work from home for their employees wherever feasible.
Full participation of Companies and LLPs is required considering the level of outbreak of the global pandemic. These organizations serve as major employers, especially in the urban areas. Hence, they play a very critical role in realizing the objective to promote social distancing as a primary means to contain spread, morbidity and mortality due to the disease.