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DU PhD Students First to Return to University: Allowed Re-entry In Hostels & Labs

The University of Delhi has allowed for the re-entry of PhD students in a phased manner and will also be re-opening its research labs for PhD students, making them the first to return to the University post lockdown.

Facing the Coronavirus pandemic situation and consequent lockdowns, some hostels had requested their students to vacate while many had left for their hometowns vacating the room themselves. Hence, the university now has charted out directives for the systematically phased re-entry of PhD students into the hostels and respective laboratories.

In a notification dated on 19th August 2020, the varsity has asked its hostels to allow bona-fide PhD students to return in a “phased manner”. It has also directed that such residents will have to mandatory follow 14-days self-quarantine in their respective hostel rooms followed by their screening by the WUS Health Center. 

The varsity has also conveyed to the hostels that the first preference in this context must be given to senior PhD students followed by other PhD students in a phased and gradual manner. 

“After the completion of the quarantine time, hostels are advised to allow such PhD students to attend their respective research laboratories”, the notice said, adding that such residents should provide evidence about visiting the laboratories only in the form of a letter from their research supervisors.

Further, in a notice dated 22nd August 2020, the University also elucidated certain guidelines to be followed by the students entering the research labs:

1) At any given time, the total number of PhD students shouldn’t exceed 2-3 students per research laboratory.

2) All such PhD students must carry their photo I.D. cards at all times.

3) Students must take all the necessary precautions of preventive measures like social distancing, face-mask, sanitization, etc while in the academic area and while working the research labs.

4) Students shall adhere to all guidelines issued/notified by the Central/State Governments, MHA and the university itself.

Apart from this, the varsity has also allowed the hostels to open up n Computer Room, TV Room, Library and Reading Room with implementation of strict social distancing measures for the benefit of the residents. However, the hostels have been directed to keep the Common Rooms and Gyms closed. The hostels have also been asked to take a series of other measures like barring residents from going out except for emergency reasons, restrict entry of guests, regularly sanitize hostel premises, etc.

The varsity has also requested the hostels against charging Mess Fees, and has also advised them to only charge 50% of the monthly electricity and water charges from the residents for the entire duration of their absence from the hostel who vacated their rooms in the midst of the pandemic. 

Minimizing running expenses incurred on staff and manpower in view of the less number of residents, is also a major suggestion shared with the hostels. 

“Hostels which are located within a common hostel complex or located very close by may opt for the centralized security, sanitation, garden and office staff / services to minimize their running expenses,” advised the varsity in its notice. “Hostels with a very few residents may arrange ‘Packed Food’ or ‘Tiffin’ from the adjacent hostels in order to minimize mess operating expenses,” it further added.

Featured Image Credits: University Of Delhi

Abhinandan Kaul

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