Biometric attendance: Defence Min officials top defaulter list

New Delhi: The Defence Ministry has topped the list of central government organisations whose employees have defaulted in marking their attendance through Aadhaar-enabled biometric system.

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Most of the employees of 27 departments and organisations affiliated to the Defence Ministry and nine each from Finance, and Information and Broadcasting Ministries have not been marking their attendance through the electronic system introduced by the NDA government.

In light of this, Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) has, in an order, asked department heads to direct their employees to mark attendance on biometric systems.

A data on employees of 169 central government offices marking and not-marking their attendances has also been issued with the DoPT order. The data, which has been prepared by the Department of Information and Technology, showed that none out of the 540 employees of DRDO was marking attendance.

The attendance number is zero for Engineer-in-Chief having 746 employees, Additional Directorate General Personnel Services with 150 strength and History Division with a staff strength of 20. All these departments function under the Ministry of Defence. Of the total of 736 registered employees in DoPT, only 576 were marking their attendances, it said.

A total of 2133, 761, 750 employees of Railways, Department of Revenue and Niti Ayog (though the list mentioned office name as Planning Commission) respectively were marking their attendance electronically.

None out of 419 employees registered with the Office of Registrar General and Census Commissioner under Home Ministry and OS Directorate (Army) with 70 registered personnel had marked their attendance through the system, as per the data.

There are 2830, 1080, and 971 registered employees respectively in these departments.

Also, none of the 195 registered employees of National Investigation Agency (NIA) were filing their attendance through the system, it said.

The Department of Electronics and Information Technology, the official record keeper for attendance of all the central government employees, recorded 78 per cent presence of employees on biometric system with 748 out of 958 using this technology.

Similarly, there were many employees in various departments who were defaulting in marking attendance through the biometric system, according to the data.

The Centre had late last year decided to use an Aadhaar enabled biometric attendance system in all its offices, including attached or subordinate, across the country.

“All employees are, therefore, required to register themselves in the system and mark their attendance. Instructions already exist for dealing with cases of late attendance or unauthorised absence, which may be followed. “It is requested that necessary directions may be issued to all employees to mark their attendance in BAS portal on regular basis,” a recent order issued by the DoPT said.

The biometric attendance system is only an enabling platform. There is no change in the instructions relating to office hours, late attendance etc which will continue to apply, according to another DoPT order.

As per existing instructions, half-a-day’s casual leave should be debited for each day of late attendance, but late attendance up to an hour, on not more than two occasions in a month, and for justifiable reasons may be condoned by the competent authority.

“Disciplinary action may also be taken against government servants who are habitually late. Early leaving is also to be treated in the same manner as late coming,” the instructions said. There are about 31 lakh central government employees working across the country.

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