Students of Deen Dayal Upadhyay Gorkhpur University sat topless outside the residence of the Vice-Chancellor on Saturday to protest against a notice of vacating hostels in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic. However, following the agitation, the university administration on Sunday said “all bona fide students will be allowed” to stay back in the hostels till a five-member committee was formed to look into the issue.
According to a statement issued by the university, the five-member committee, headed by Professor Nandita Singh of the Arts Department, held a meeting on Sunday and started its work. The members will talk to protesting students in presence of their wardens and submit their recommendations to the administration.
An 11-member special team has also been formed to visit the hostels to listen to the problems of students, and identify those living illegally in the hostels and recommend actions against them, the statement added.
The students said classes were going on and competitive exams were in the offing. “We should not be vacated from our hostels. Students from several states, including Uttarakhand and Kashmir, stay here. If they go back to their houses, they will have to take several transport options, which will expose them to health hazards,” said a student.
The protest, which started on Saturday afternoon and continued till 2 am on Sunday, was withdrawn after the administration’s intervention.
“The administration has decided that those who are genuine occupants will not have to vacate the hostels. At present, only postgraduate and research
classes are on as per government guidelines. We have to sanitise all the hostels. So, our plan is to shift the students to another wing and sanitise their rooms. Earlier, we had thought that we would vacate the hostels during the winter vacation to sanitise all the rooms. But the students had objected to that,” said a university administration official.
The official said hostels were allowed to open after the state government had lifted the lockdown with a condition that every room would have just one occupant.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines