Maharaja Sayajirao University of Vadodara (MSU) is taking guarded steps to reopen on November 23 as per the directive of the state government, after they were closed since March due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, while classes for doctorate and post graduate students will reopen, the university has decided to suspend new admissions to the hostels in order to reserve the available hostel seats for social distancing of inmates.
Dr Krishnakumar Chudasma, Registrar of MSU, told The Indian Express that the university has decided to keep new admissions to hostels on hold for the current academic year.
“Our hostel strength is about 4,000, of which roughly 1,000 are new admissions every year. But, as social distancing is mandatory and we cannot use the hostel to its full capacity of two or three seats per room, we are looking at using the additional seats that will thus be available to ensure social distancing of inmates,” he said.
Chudasama added that from November 23, only those pursuing doctorate courses and post graduate students will be allowed to return to the campus and hostels.
The classroom strength of post graduate courses is about 30, according to officials, which makes it easier to follow the Covid-19 protocol.
However, for new admissions to undergraduate courses, the wait will be longer.
“We are waiting for the guidelines of the Gujarat government regarding the commencement of under graduate classes. The strength of undergraduate classes is usually 150 and it is impossible to have social distancing at full strength. So without a clarity on that, we cannot restart undergraduate classes,” Chudasma said, adding that close to 12,000 new students will be joining MSU in the academic year.
The university, which had closed the campus after a round of sanitisation during the early days of the Covid-19 outbreak, will reopen after another round of sanitising the campus.
“We are sanitising the classrooms, common areas of the campus. We are also sanitising the mess and lobby areas of the hostel. We will sanitise the rooms phase-wise once the occupants return as it is not advisable to open the rooms when they are not around. Most of their luggage is still in the rooms,” Chudasama added.
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