Shortcomings curtail success of biometric attendance system

Shortcomings curtail success of biometric attendance system

Lack of internet connectivity in rural areas blamed

Shortcomings curtail success of biometric attendance system

The biometric attendance system, aimed at monitoring government employees at all offices, is yet to enjoy the degree of success it could hope for.

Despite biometric machines being installed in almost all offices of local administration, several factors have affected its implementation.

The biometric attendance system was introduced in the second half of 2013, during which instructions were made for all government offices to compulsorily install biometric devices. Following the government order, the devices were installed in a phased manner.

In Mysuru district, of the 235 Gram Panchayats (GPs), biometric devices have been installed in 234 GPs. Despite the near 100 per cent installation of such devices, they are active only in 151 GPs (around 60 per cent).

Taluk-wise figures, available online, shows that Periyapatna taluk tops the district in e-attendance generation. Biometric devices have been installed at all 26 GPs in the taluk, of which 24 GPs generate e-attendance regularly, which translates to 80 per cent implementation. 

In other taluks, e-attendance generation is successful in 82 pc of GPs in Mysuru (installed at 34 of 35 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 29 GPs), followed by Hunsur, 76 pc (installed all 30 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 23 GPs); H D Kote, 65 pc (installed at all 32 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 21 GPs); Nanjangud, 51 pc (installed at all 45 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 23 GPs); T Narsipur, 44 pc (installed at 31 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 13 GPs) and K R Nagar, 41 pc (installed at 36 GPs, with e-attendance generation at 18 GPs). 

The data can be assessed by general public on the Pancha Tantra website of Panchayat Raj and Rural Development Department.

Considering Taluk Panchayat (TP) offices, biometric attendance devices have been installed at six of the seven TPs in the district. Biometric device is yet to be installed at Periyapatna taluk panchayat office.

Shortcomings

Several factors have contributed to the delay in the 100 pc implementation of the biometric attendance system. Speaking to Deccan Herald, Zilla Panchayat CEO, P A Gopal said that one of the factors that has delayed in the implementation is the lack of internet facility. 

Several remote GPs have not been able to implement biometric attendance system as data network is not accessible there, he said. He added that the situation could improve if works of National Optical Fibre Network is completed in the district. Another problem faced is malfunctioning biometric devices, he said.

Despite the shortcomings, biometric attendance system has ensured punctuality of officials in several offices, he claimed. Under the system, officials who enter offices after 10.10 am are issued notices, if they are late for the first time. If they are late for the second time, they are issued show cause notices and if the employees are late again, their salaries are cut or officials are suspended.

Gopal said that even though no official has been suspended in the district so far, the measure has immensely improved the attendance of officials.

Madhu, First Division Assistant, E-governance unit of Mysuru Zilla Panchayat said that notices had been served to 13 of the 91 employees at the Zilla Panchayat in 2015.  

While some government offices have installed Rs 10,000 worth devices, some have installed devices worth Rs 30,000. Some offices are yet to install devices, said officals.

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