The Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD) will create a separate cell to address mental health issues faced by students and teachers during and post coronavirus pandemic. The cell will be headed by a Joint Secretary at MHRD. Earlier this week, in a meeting with directors of 23 IITs, the minister had asked institutes to establish a helpline to address mental health challenges.
There should be a task force set up by every institute which should include psychologists to handle mental health issues, HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishak had suggested. Regarding the issue of salary, pension, scholarships of staff and students, he desired that they may be paid in time and there must not be any problem in this regard. He also directed that salaries up to April 30 for adhoc, contractual and daily wagers should be paid in full up to April 30.
Meanwhile, the HRD Ministry has launched a helpline portal for students who are facing difficulties due to closure of schools and colleges in view of the nationwide lockdown to combat the coronavirus outbreak. This has been created by two interns working at the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE).
The total number of people affected by the coronavirus pandemic in India rose to 2,902 including 68 people who have been killed by the virus and 183 people who have recovered.
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