Mumbai: Hostel students skip home visits, stay put on campus amid 2nd wave

Unlike last year, students residing in hostels at University of Mumbai (MU) campus, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IIT Bombay) and other student accommodations have not returned home this time amidst the second Covid-19 wave in Maharashtra. This year, students living on campus are maintaining safety and security measures and do not want to take the risk of travelling during such critical times.

It is better to stay on campus at this time and not travel anywhere, said Vijaya Salunkhe, a student residing at MU campus. Salunkhe, who is originally from Latur district said, "I do not want to go back home now because it is not safe to travel. Last year, there was a lot of panic but now, I am attending lectures online and maintaining social distancing while residing on campus."

While, a student residing at IIT Bombay campus on request of anonymity said, "I do not want to return to my native village because I do not trust the health care facilities available there. I believe I can avail better treatment and immediate medical assistance on campus in case of an emergency situation."

Vinod Malale, deputy registrar and public relations officer of the Institute of Distance and Open Learning of the University of Mumbai (MU IDOL) said, "Some students returned to hostels on campus when the Covid-19 cases were reducing. Our canteens on campus and hostel mess services are functioning for these students. We have informed students to follow Covid-19 protocols."

While, Subhasis Chaudhuri, director of IIT Bombay said, "Around 3,000 out of approximately 11,000 students are residing at IIT Bombay campus at the moment. We witnessed a rise in cases on campus few weeks ago but now the situation is under control. We have provided separate rooms for students and converted a hostel into a facility where students can get checked and quarantine themselves. It is not safe for students to travel at this point."

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