The Madhya Pradesh higher education department has linked e-attendance with disbursement of salaries of principals, teachers and employees of government colleges in the state to stem rampant absenteeism among faculty and staff in the institutes, officials said on Friday.
“We have installed biometric machines at all government colleges in Indore division and no one will now escape by making excuses that their college did not have biometric machines so they could not mark their attendance,” said RS Verma, additional director of the higher education department in Indore division.
During a recent video conference with additional directors of the department and university registrars, state principal secretary (higher education) Ashish Upadhayaya said that e-attendance has been made mandatory to all teaching and non-teaching staff of government colleges.
Employees who did not mark their attendance on biometric machines will not be able to draw their salary, Upadhayaya told the officials.
“They will be marked absent on the days when their attendance was not registered through biometrics machines,” he said.
Although the principal secretary has given the order verbally, it will be implemented across the state, said Verma.
E-machines have been installed at all government colleges across the state to monitor attendance of employees.
Earlier, when the principal secretary was informed that at times e-machines do not function due to low internet speed, he said excuses will not be tolerated.
‘New system will help get exact data about availability of faculty in colleges’
“Besides, the new system will help get exact data about the availability of faculty in different colleges and also to record the faculty - student ratio as we want to improve results in future.”
Explaining how the system works, Verma said that the principal of every college in the state will be responsible to ensure all faculty members mark their attendance through e-attendance.
If the principal fails to execute his or her responsibility, the department will deduct his or her salary and subsequently, he or she can deduct the salary of the teaching and non-staff of the college for failing to mark e-attendance, he said.
On whether orders will apply to guest faculty in colleges, he said, “No guest faculty will come under the order as they are paid for every lecture they deliver. For each lecture they get Rs 275, so there is no issue of attendance”.
‘New system will cause problems’
A number of faculty members said they were not in favour of e-attendance. The new system will cause problems as working of education institutions is different from government departments, some of them said.
“Working at a college is not a 9 to 5 job. Some days we have to work overtime, keeping the student’s future in mind,” a faculty member at the Government Arts and Commerce College who did not want to be named, said.
“The biometrics system can be implemented for non-teaching staff whose work is mainly associated with office job,” he said.
Other faculty members, however, supported the government’s move, saying that it will help streamline the college functioning.