Wait for hostel rooms at DU to be longer
While the Delhi University (DU) has announced the resumption of offline classes, students seeking hostel accommodation will have to wait a little longer as the colleges might take a few more days to complete the process of allotment of rooms, officials said.
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Amid continued protests by student outfits demanding resumption of offline classes at DU, the university had on Wednesday issued an order announcing commencement of classes in physical mode for all undergraduate and postgraduate courses from February 17.
Following the announcement, DU colleges have sprung into action to prepare for the arrival of students and cleaning and revamping of hostel rooms has begun. However, the application process for admission into hostels will take time, officials said.
According to sources at the Maharaja Agrasen College, hostel rooms might not be ready by February 17 since they have been closed for nearly two years. However, college principal Sanjeev Kumar Tiwari said they are working on a “war footing” to prepare the hostel rooms.
“The hostel has a capacity to accommodate 56 students. We have begun preparing the rooms by putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls. The room allotment process was done online,” he said.
Another task for the college administration is to ensure rooms are ventilated and there is enough space for two students.
“We will have to see the size of the room and if it’s a small room, only one student will be allowed. The hostel list can’t come out on February 17 and will take a couple of days more. This usually happens every year. After the admission process finishes, the hostel list is prepared,” said Kirori Mal College principal Vibha Chauhan.
Meanwhile, the university has advised outstation students to plan their arrival in Delhi in such a manner that they are able to complete the isolation period of three days before joining their respective college/department.
Pankaj Arora, Dean Students’ Welfare, DU, said, “Each hostel has a management committee and they will decide on the further processes. We had a meeting with hostel provosts day before yesterday (Tuesday) and we advised them to complete the process of hostel allotment online so that students know where they will be going after they return to Delhi.”
“Arranging isolation facility is the prerogative of the hostel and if students wish, they can complete their three-day isolation period somewhere else and then come to the hostel,” Mr Arora said.
Indraprastha College for Women principal Babli Moitra Saraf is hopeful that the application process for the college hostel will begin from Friday. But she also cast doubt on whether students will be able to come back to colleges at such a short notice.
“Restoration, deep cleaning and sanitisation are things that we will take care of. But there are more important things like the hostel admissions have to done first for the students of first and second year. We are making a list of availability of seats and vacancies,” she said.
“By tomorrow evening, we will start the application process. Accordingly, we will open the hostels as students are coming in. We have to wait and watch how the situation unfolds,” she added.
Principal Chauhan agreed with Ms Saraf and said they will begin the hostel allotment first.
“First we will invite applications from students who want to stay in hostels and then prepare a merit list. There’s a hostel committee that takes care of this. We will follow the usual procedure,” Ms Chauhan said.
Talking about providing isolation facilities to students, she said it is not one or two students who need to be provided that facility. “I think it will be difficult but if there is an exception we will do that. The hostel has a capacity of 190 students. We will manage it and be in touch with the students. Once we find out who the students are who require hostels, we will work things out,” she said.
Delhi University colleges were closed in March 2020 in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The university had given a go-ahead to the resumption of practical sessions in February last year, but after the emergence of the second wave, classes were suspended in March.
In September, the university allowed final year undergraduate and postgraduate students to return to campus, but the attendance was thin. Besides ensuring that social distancing guidelines are followed to ensure the safe resumption of offline academic activities, officials are facing the mammoth task of ensuring early allotments of rooms to outstation students.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Careers360 staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)