VIJAYAWADA: The frequent glitches in the Vidyawaan server have left the degree students across the State in jitters as payment of their scholarship amount is now at stake, what with the biometric machines installed in their colleges failing to record attendance.On the other hand, the higher education department did not yet supply the biometric machines to several colleges nor cleared the bills for purchasing the equipment which, in turn, is likely to delay timely payment of scholarships.
Developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC), the Aadhar-linked biometric attendance system has been made mandatory by the government under the Vidyawaan scheme in all degree colleges across the State, to reimburse tuition fee and to pay scholarships and mess bills.
Under the Vidyawaan scheme, students and faculty have to mark their attendance in biometric machines, both in the morning and evening, and the data is linked to a centralised server to prevent any tampering. Such machines are to be supplied by the higher education department to all the colleges and get them installed as well. The systems archive the attendance data and link it to e-pass system to pay scholarships.
Though the government initiated measures to introduce the biometric attendance system in December 2014, it was delayed due to various reasons. Later, in September 2016, the Higher Education Council gave a final warning to all the degree colleges in the State to implement Aadhar-linked biometric attendance system immediately to put an end to the misuse of fee reimbursement.
However, only 73 per cent of government degree colleges registered themselves under the Vidyawaan scheme. Surprisingly, no medical college including SVIMS and NTR Health University came forward to enrol under the scheme. Similar is the case with varsities like JNTU and Acharya Nagarjuna University.
Meanwhile, only 10 per cent private colleges registered themselves under the scheme, which is likely to affect the payment of scholarships to the respective students at the end of the academic year.
“Getting registered under the scheme is merely not in our hands, for the department or the NIC staff must look into it and visit the colleges to procure necessary data. However, shortage of manpower is delaying the process. Once registered, the department would send the biometric equipment to the university and then dispatch to the affiliated colleges,” said T Ravi Raju, Vice-Chancellor of NTR Health University.
The higher education department has supplied biometric machines to only 65 per cent of the registered colleges in the State.
At one point of time, the department has instructed the respective college managements to procure the equipment themselves and send the bills. But, it did not clear the bills and instead did a U-turn on its instructions, creating a dilemma among the college managements.