Coronavirus: DU asks students to vacate halls by Friday

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Electricity, water, and gas supply will be turned off at 6pm Friday

Dhaka University will put all the residential rooms, except for International Hall, under individual locks on Friday at 6 pm.

Essential services including electricity, water, and gas supply will be turned off as well by respective hall authorities at 6 pm on the same day.

Out of 18 residential dormitories, only foreign students’ residence Sir PJ Hartog International Hall will remain open under special circumstances and under tight surveillance of the hall provost.

The decision came from the emergency meeting of the Provost Standing Committee on Thursday evening immediately after the university syndicate – university’s highest governing body – ordered the students to vacate the dormitories by the mentioned time (Friday 6 pm).

Confirming the matter, a member of Provost Standing Committee and Provost of Sir AF Rahman Hall,

Prof AKM Saiful Islam Khan said: “An internal emergency response cell from each hall will be set up to tackle any situation. The security guards will also follow a certain roster of duty at the main entrance.”

“No one will be allowed to stay at the dormitories after 6 pm. Emergency services and cleanliness will be ensured inside the dormitories,” he added.

Member Secretary of the committee, DU Proctor AKM Golam Rabbani told Dhaka Tribune: “The foreign students who are already out of this country, are encouraged not to come back. We will make sure the remaining ones at the International Hall will follow the rules and instructions issued by the government.”

“We instructed the foreign students not to come out of the hall without an emergency. If needed, they are asked to contact the hall provost,” Proctor Golam Rabbani said.

The DU dormitories were last vacated on August 21, 2007, following a clash between the students and

Army during the army-backed caretaker government.

DU extends suspension of academic activities till March 31

Authorities at Dhaka University (DU) have extended the tenure of suspension of classes and exams till March 31 over the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

As of now, Bangladesh has confirmed 17 cases of Covid-19. Of the total 17 patients, three were earlier released upon recovery while one died on Wednesday.

The virus which has spread to at least 160 countries of the world, has killed over 8,900 people across the world since it was first reported in China’s Wuhan last December.

Around 219,351 have been infected by Covid-19, a new strain of coronavirus, while 85,749 people have recovered from it.

On Tuesday, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) decided to shut down its dormitories to curtail the Covid-19 spread. The previous day, Chittagong University issued a notice closing down its halls effective immediately.

Earlier on Sunday, Dhaka University Central Students’ Union (Ducsu) recommended the university authorities “shutdown the university temporarily or announce summer vacation early after rescheduling,” and placed a memorandum to that effect with the VC.

Echoing the student body representatives, Dhaka University Teachers’ Association and the Federation of Bangladesh University Teachers’ Association issued statements concerning the Covid-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, the students who went on indefinite hunger-strike on Saturday night – demanding shut down of all academic activities and residential halls – have withdrawn their fast unto death after being reassured by DU proctor and Ducsu leaders.

On Monday, DU authorities announced to suspend all the classes and exams of the university, after holding an emergency meeting with stakeholders.

Educational institutions in the country decided to halt classes till March 31 in an attempt to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.