Residents, associations clash over entry of domestic help

Many apartment associations and Residents’ Welfare Associations (RWAs) have started framing their own rules on the entry of domestic help, vendors and visitors into the complex on the grounds that the guidelines listed by the civic body are vague.

The ban on entry of domestic help who work in individual flats is proving to be a point of conflict.

While the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike guidelines allow for entry of housekeeping staff, they remain silent on domestic help such as cooks, nannies, etc. As a result, most residential associations are not allowing them entry, which has left people working from home in the lurch.

Lack of help

With no outside assistance, they are finding it difficult to juggle daily domestic chores, online classes for the children, cooking and office deadlines.

A 45-year-old software employee and a mother of two sons said that her apartment in North Bengaluru which has 50 flats is still not allowing maids or visitors. “We have a rigorous work schedule and I have to manage my sons’ online classes and in the middle of that we have to do household chores. Everything has opened up but our apartment association is still not allowing maids. This is completely ridiculous and we want to involve the BBMP and ensure that the association does not take unilateral decisions,” she said.


Another apartment in South Bengaluru is allowing visitors but not domestic help. “This is discrimination. The Owners’ Association says that it does not want the apartment to become a COVID-19 cluster, but by that logic, they should ban visitors, too,” said an irate resident.

When contacted, Health Commissioner K.V. Trilok Chandra clarified that domestic help can be allowed into apartment complexes.

‘Rules are ambiguous’

Srikanth Narasimhan, founder of Bangalore Apartments’ Federation (BAF) said, “The rules are ambiguous but if one interprets the BBMP’s orders, it is clear that movement of people should be allowed between 5 a.m. and 7 p.m. within apartments on weekdays. On weekends however, no movement of people is allowed as there is a curfew,” he said, while adding that COVID-19 protocol such as wearing masks should be followed by everyone.

He, too, felt that the BBMP guidelines were ambiguous. “It would be better if the guidelines are more clear and specific so that they can be implemented effectively,” he added.

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Printable version | Jul 24, 2021 8:14:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/residents-associations-clash-over-entry-of-domestic-help/article34836255.ece

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