February 4, 2021 8:24:50 am
Colleges in Maharashtra will reopen from February 15, state Higher and Technical Education Minister Uday Samant said on Wednesday.
The decision comes in the backdrop of a meeting that Samant had held with vice-chancellors of various universities in the state earlier this week.
Colleges in the state have been shut since the lockdown was announced last March and students are attending online classes. There has been a growing demand from educationists to resume physical classes. Last month, a delegation of vice-chancellors had met Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari and sought the physical reopening of colleges.
“It has been approved to start regular classes in all non-agricultural universities, self-financed universities and their affiliated colleges in the state from Monday. Colleges will start as per the guidelines of the University Grants Commission,” Samant told mediapersons.
As per rules, 50 per cent of the students would be allowed to attend classes on a rotational basis each day. The remaining 50 per cent can attend online classes. The students and staff must follow all Covid-19 protocols while attending classes, including wearing face masks and maintaining social distancing. The colleges also must provide sanitisers inside the campus.
The minister said that universities that fall in containment zones should take requisite clearances from the local administration before reopening. He added that in view of the pandemic, the rule of minimum 75 per cent attendance will be waived for this year. Samant further said that students will be provided both online and offline options for sitting for exams.
The universities have also been advised to prepare guidelines for a phased opening of hostels and conduct electrical and safety audits of the hostels before students are allowed to stay in them.
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