Around 80 staffers of the urban development and housing and urban poverty alleviation ministries were found missing in office when minister Venkaiah Naidu conducted a surprise check on Monday morning.
After Naidu found such large number of staffers missing, a decision was taken to install biometric attendance system in these ministries besides certain other measures like withdrawing of attendance registers 15 minutes after the due time of reporting and late-comers be marked absent for the day and not paid for the same.
The minister reached Nirman Bhawan at 9.10am and it was found that around 80 staffers were not in their seats, highly placed officials said, adding they would be asked to explain reasons for that.
This was the second surprise check at the said ministries by Naidu, who has been focusing on the need for punctuality. He went around the various floors of Nirman Bhawan, which houses the two ministries, during his hour-long tour.
Officials said that while the minister took a serious view of the tendency of absenteeism and coming late for work among the employees, it was also noted that cleanliness and maintenance at Nirman Bhawan has improved since his last inspection on June 12.
An official statement said a large number of personnel in the lower rungs, like section heads and supporting staff, did not report for work on time.
For the inspection, Naidu was accompanied by Shankar Aggarwal, secretary (urban development) and other senior officials of both the ministries.
Following the inspection, Naidu issued directions as per which joint secretaries of the two ministries shall visit their respective offices every day for a week to monitor attendance and find out about chronic offenders.
Naidu also directed that necessary and immediate action be taken against those who report late for work. Attendance registers are to be withdrawn 15 minutes after the due time of reporting and late-comers are to be marked absent for the day and not paid for the same.