A file photo of student living in a hostel at north campus in Delhi University in New Delhi
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The University of Delhi has ordered their hostels to gradually re-allow graduate students, but they must quarantine themselves in their room for 14 days.

In a communication dated August 19, the university asked hostels to give preference to older PhD students, followed by other PhD students. For those who vacated their rooms following the university’s March 19 announcement, hostels have been asked not to charge trade fair fees and only charge 50 percent of residents’ monthly electricity and water charges for the entire duration of their absence.

In light of the coronavirus pandemic, some university hostels had asked their students to vacate the hostels, while some students had gone to their hometowns and cleared their rooms themselves. “It is recommended that only registered doctoral students in good faith may gradually return to the hostels. However, these residents must perform a 14-day self-quarantine in their respective hostel rooms, followed by their screening by the WUS Health Center, “the statement said.

After the quarantine period has expired, the hostels are recommended to allow such doctoral students to visit their respective research laboratories. The notice states that these residents should only provide evidence of laboratory attendance through a letter from their research director.

The university also advised the hostel authorities to “develop a method to ensure the availability of at least one person to interact with the residents on a regular basis” as “it is very important to interact regularly with the hostel residents to resolve their difficulties update and increase their morale ”. “The hostel residents may be encouraged to walk, play, practice yoga and spend time together in limited numbers on the hostel premises by following norms of social distancing,” the statement said.

The hostels may open a computer room, TV room, library and reading room for the benefit of residents, but must maintain a safe distance between residents while using such facilities. However, the common room and gym will remain closed until further orders, he added.

It also advised hostels not to allow residents to leave the hostel premises except for medical reasons, and urged them to arrange medication and other essential items for their residents through alternative resources or staff, including online stores .

“The access of guests and outsiders should remain restricted in all hostels until further orders are made. The sale of coupons for the exhibition facility is to remain restricted in all hostels until further orders are placed, ”it said.

The hostels are advised to keep their running costs for staff and labor as low as possible in view of the few residents who actually live in the hostels. Hostels that are in a shared hostel complex or very close by can opt for centralized security, plumbing, gardening, and office staff or services to minimize their running costs.

“Hostels with very few residents can arrange ‘packed food’ or ‘tiffin’ from the neighboring hostels (according to the printed / actual meal charges) to minimize running costs for the limited number of residents,” it said.

The university said last year’s students who wish to vacate their hostel rooms may be allowed to visit their hostel rooms to collect their belongings under the strict supervision of the hostel authorities. “Such residents must pay their dues and seek clearance from the hostel,” it said, adding that the welfare of all support staff should also be prioritized equally.

“The hostels are advised to regularly refurbish the premises of the hostels and to maintain a safe and hygienic atmosphere within the premises,” it said.

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