In March 2020, physical classes in Maharashtra colleges were stopped following the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown. Regular year exams were cancelled, while final-year exams were conducted online.
Now, with the rollout of vaccination drives in several parts of the country, including Maharashtra, many states have been given the green light to reopen colleges and universities.
Maharashtra Minister for Higher and Technical Education Uday Samant on Wednesday had said that colleges in Maharashtra can start physical classes with 50 per cent capacity from 15 February.
However, he'd added that all hostels may not reopen from 15 February as some of them are being used as quarantine centres.
Universities can conduct exams online as well as offline as per the COVID-19-related situation in their respective areas, the minister had said.
"Universities have been directed not to force students to pay full fees, and a committee is looking into students' fee-related grievances.
"If a college is found violating government norms, it will face legal action."
Universities can start with practicals, and gradually schedule physical lectures, Samant had told reporters, adding that colleges are expected to take students into confidence while deciding on this.
Students will get relaxation from the 75 per cent attendance rule as colleges have remained shut for most part of the academic year 2020–21 due to the pandemic, he had assured.
"The curriculum of second and final-year courses has been covered to some extent through virtual classes."
(With inputs from PTI)