Maharashtra Colleges can reopen from Feb 1 for fully vaccinated students

Maharashtra Colleges can reopen from Feb 1 for fully vaccinated students

The state government has declared that colleges across Maharashtra can open campuses to students for in-person teaching from February 1. The decision is applicable to all colleges and universities, public, private and deemed. Only students who have been administered both the doses of the Covid-19 vaccine can enter the campuses; others can attend college online.

Earlier, on January 6, the state’s higher and technical education department had closed colleges and directed institutes to conduct classes online till February 15. In line with that, examinations before February 15 will be conducted online. The state released a government resolution to that effect on Tuesday afternoon.

“Exams that will be conducted after February 15 can be in online and offline mode too,” said the GR. The state, though, has directed colleges to be sensitive towards students’ problems.

“If students have network issues, or if electricity is lost, if any candidate has health problems or if s/he or someone in the family is Covid positive, all universities and colleges must be sensitive towards these issues and ensure that the candidate does not miss an exam or lose a year. These rules are applicable to all colleges and universities of the state, private and deemed
included,” said the directive.

In pockets of Gondia, Gadchiroli, North Maharashtra, Jalgaon, Nanded and Marathwada, internet connectivity is particularly poor. “In such cases, the vice chancellor of each of these universities must discuss the situation on the ground with the disaster control authority and the collectors and in conjunction take a call on how and when offline exams can be conducted.”

Colleges and district authorities have been asked to conduct vaccination camps for the youth and ensure that students are doubly vaccinated.

“The decision to open hostels and campuses’ residential facilities will be taken up in the next step. The decision will be taken jointly by authorities of the higher and technical education department, higher education director, and the technical education director keeping in mind the local situation with regards to Covid cases,” stated the GR. Institutes can work with the local municipality and disaster management authority to draw up an SOP and conduct classes and exams accordingly. In case of
faculty and non-teaching staff’s attendance, the state has left the decision to the respective university and colleges.

Higher and technical education minister Uday Samant took to social media on Tuesday to announce the reopening of colleges and the fact that chief minister Uddhav Thackeray has given his nod for it.