What’s the news: After Uttar Pradesh’s Kanpur University, Jharkhand’s Kolhan University is gearing up to use a facial recognition-based attendance system, as per the Times of India. The latter institution will use the system to mark employee and staff attendance, yet again raising concerns about workplace surveillance and employees’ right to privacy. Tenders out till March 14: According to P K Pani, spokesperson for the university, bidders can apply for this project until March 14 (Tuesday). The selected agency will roll out the facial recognition-based attendance system for employees and postgraduate (PG) department staff and later extend it to all constituent colleges, said Pani. However, comments from employees in the university indicate that not everyone is enthusiastic about this plan. Concerns raised by employees: The Times of India spoke to teachers and staff about the new system that is supposed to provide real-time information on employee attendance. One person pointed out that even a 10-minute delay in the new system leads to an absentee remark that puts pressure on employees commuting distances of 15-20 km every day. Meanwhile, Prakesh Pandey, a teacher at the Graduate School College for Women, talked about the issue of mobile network in remote areas and the staff’s inexperience in using such technologies. He said that the university must look into these issues before implementing a new attendance system. Why it matters: True to what Pandey said, most people in remote regions (at times even in urban areas) are unaware about such AI-based technologies and their…
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