Now, Aadhaar to track faculty attendance in medical colleges

HYDERABAD: A new circular issued by the Medical Council of India (MCI) has left staffers at around two dozen private and government medical colleges in the state rattled. In the circular, MCI has directed all faculty members of these colleges to register with their Aadhaar card details to facilitate the installation of biometric fingerprint attendance machines in their respective colleges.

The order is certain to hit both government as well as private medical colleges. In the case of government colleges, faculty members often leave before the official 4 pm deadline to attend to their lucrative private practices, sources said. The new measure will immediately bring down the absentee count in these institutions, they said. However, the order will have the strongest impact on private medical colleges as 30-40% of their fa culty comprise either `ghost teachers’ (they remain only on paper) or guest faculty hired to teach medicos on certain days of the week, sources added.

“Once the Aadhaar card details of faculty members are linked to the biometric attendance devices, the system of ghost medical faculty in private medical colleges will automatically be wiped out,” said Dr K Ramesh Reddy , member, Medical Council of India (MCI). Warning doctors, who allow private colleges to use their names as `ghost faculty’, of serious consequences, Dr Reddy said that such instances can be easily tracked down by the MCI now. “Such lapses will be treated as unethical acts and the MCI, as punishment, can debar such doctors from practising,” he added.

The new system was welcomed by Telangana Junior Doctors’ Association state president Dr G Srinivas, who said that it would specially help medicos pursuing clinical courses in government medical colleges. “Many a times, undergraduate medicos face challenges as their faculty for clinical subjects like general medicine, general surgery , obstetrics and paediatrics leave the teaching hospital before 2 pm, even though they are supposed to be there till 4 pm.But the new system can prevent such practices,” said Dr Srinivas.

When contacted, an office bearer of Telangana Private Medical Colleges’ Association (TPMCA), on condition of anonymity , said that most of them will now face difficulty in recruiting full-time faculty as those on roll either as guest faculty or ghost faculty may not agree to share their Aadhaar card details under the new system.