May 20, 2021 1:10:04 am
The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) administration has asked for donations from its alumni to upgrade its existing health centre to a Covid health centre.
At a virtual meeting to brief students, staff and faculty on the prevailing situation, Vice-Chancellor M Jagadesh Kumar said, “We are in the process of establishing a Covid care centre inside the campus. We are in touch with the Delhi government and the SDM. We are also in touch with NGOs that can help.”
However, he did not respond to questions on when the health centre was expected to be set up and whether it would have oxygen beds. The Delhi High Court had earlier directed JNU to set up a Covid care centre after the JNU Teachers’ Association went to court.
Kumar also said the administration was in touch with authorities to start the vaccination drive for those over 18 years on the campus.
Earlier in the day, he had issued an appeal to the alumni and said the campus had “limited resources” and there was “a need to boost its existing infrastructure to meet the increased demand on campus”.
He has asked that contributions be made to the ‘JNU Alumni Endowment Fund’ created in February last year.
“JNU plans to upgrade the current infrastructure of our Health Centre and develop a well-equipped Covid Health Centre, which requires a considerable amount of financial support. In this testing time, it is time for you to think of your alma mater and be a part of its endeavours to provide safety, security to all its stakeholders, particularly the students,” he wrote.
“Your contribution to JNU in any form, a one-day salary or larger amounts, will make a difference in helping us fight this pandemic. Alumni are also welcome to donate oxygen concentrators. Donating masks, oximeters, sanitisers and digital thermometers will help us in equipping our frontline workers,” wrote Kumar.
At the virtual meet, Dean of Students’ Welfare Sudheer Pratap Singh said JNU hostels were “Covid-free”. “As of date, all hostels are Covid-free. We have 12 students outside the campus in Covid care centre, who will also be discharged soon. No student on campus has Covid,” he said.
JNU has seen consistent demand for cancellation of classes due to Covid. However, unlike many other universities like DU, classes were never suspended. Asked why, Kumar said, “JNU is decentralised and decisions are taken by each school and centre. Most of them decided to continue. Some asked for relaxation, which was granted.”
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