Delhi University colleges will reopen in a graded manner on Monday for final-year students who want to use college facilities for practicals. However, most college hostels will continue to remain unavailable.
“Only final-year students in small batches are allowed to visit their respective colleges/ centres/departments for laboratory/ practical/skills, library and other related activities as per discretion of respective principal/ director/ head in line with University Grants Commission guidelines and SOPs dated November 5, 2020, and MHA order dated January 27, 202,” read a notice issued by registrar Vikas Gupta, ordering that all teaching staff must be at work from Monday.
While students may go to their colleges on a voluntary basis for practical work, theory classes will continue to be held online.
Different colleges have adopted different systems of calling students. Shri Ram College of Commerce has put up a roster of teachers available on different days for practical classes. Deen Dayal Upadhyaya (DDU) College will conduct all practical classes of one class on one day of the week, while theory classes will continue online for the rest of the week.
Meanwhile, St Stephen’s College has opened its hostel, with small batches of residents requiring the facilities returning from January 10. Some colleges are also considering providing facilities on a limited basis to final-year students who need it.
However, most colleges said making hostel facilities available is currently not on the cards.
“We shared a Google form on Sunday so that those who wish to come to college can fill it up; we can accordingly accommodate their practicals. We know accommodation is going to be difficult but we will need a notification from the university to reopen the hostel…,” said Kirori Mal College principal Vibha Chauhan.
Principals of Ramjas College and IP College for Women also said that in the absence of directions from the university, hostel facilities will not be available.
At Miranda House, the hostel has been available to students who need the facility for various reasons such as writing exams. Principal Bijayalaxmi Nanda said they are considering making it available for current residents who want to return to Delhi for their practicals. “There are some ground rules — getting an RT-PCR test before coming, a quarantine period, only single occupancy in rooms, residents limiting their movement outside campus. We have kept our staff in full strength and have provided food even if its only for two students. We will look at accommodating final-year residents on a priority basis as well… we can’t push them to paying guest facilities,” said Nanda.
DDU College principal Hem Chand Jain said: “We sought applications from third-year students who felt they needed hostel facilities; only five students across our two hostels said they do. Since it’s a small number, we can make our rooms available as single-seaters. However, the mess won’t be available since it’s not economically or practically possible to re-open for such a small number. But we are in touch with a nearby tiffin service for them.”