The Dental Council of India (DCI), has come down heavily on erring private and public dental colleges across India, by issuing a warning letter to all deans and principals to submit quarterly biometric attendance reports of their respective faculties.
85 dental colleges across India were sent out a DCI circular two weeks ago, including leading institutes like Government Dental College in Mumbai, Maharashtra and state-run Maulana Azad Institute of Dental Sciences (MAIDS) New Delhi, to make available their quarterly biometric attendance report to the DCI within 21 days. A flaw of any kind would result in action being initiated against the erring, under Dentists Act, 1948 stated the circular.
The circular reminded that 5 warning letters have been issued to these colleges for production of faculty attendance report, since 2013.
The dental regulatory body has for the last eight years been insisting on biometric reporting of attendance and CCTV monitoring to keep ensure that faculty members in both government and private hospitals don’t abscond from work or that dental colleges don’t fall short of working faculty, reports DNA.
The DCI stricture comes in the face of various inherent flaws observed in the system. One such came to light during an inspection at Gurunanak Institute of Dental Sciences and Research, where a group D employee was found posing as Head of Department, Community Medicine.
“Gurunanak Institute later had to recruit 8 clinical tutors, 4 associate professors, and 3 senior lecturers to comply with the norms. DCI has become extremely strict in terms of maintaining adequate teaching faculty for running the college. Most colleges, be it public or private are understaffed and therefore furnishing attendance reports becomes crucial,” said a senior doctor working in the private institute.
Though biometric installations had been ensured by the regulatory body, 8 years ago, the system fell through due to infrastructural limitations. “There are now technical difficulties in individual colleges to maintain biometric attendance systems. However, as far as our institute is concerned it is government-run, our teachers are working, they take lectures, practicals, and clinic regularly,” quipped Dr Mansingh Pawar, Dean, Government Dental College, Maharashtra and also a Member General Body in DCI.