Dhaka University (DU) has abandoned a plan to reopen the halls on Mar 13 to its honours and master’s students and also suspended the examinations.
The decision came at an emergency meeting of the university’s Academic Council on Tuesday, a day after Education Minister Dipu Moni announced that classes in all universities would resume on May 24 and halls of residence would reopen on May 17.
Protesting students who demand the halls be reopened by March said that they would declare their next move once the 72 hours they gave the authorities to meet their demands was over, reports bdnews24.com.
All educational institutions, including universities, were shut down on Mar 17 last year after the coronavirus outbreak in Bangladesh. Classes resumed online on a limited scale but the residential halls remained closed.
The students have long demanded the reopening of the halls due to the accommodation problems in Dhaka. The university is running all activities, but have kept the halls shut, according to the disgruntled students.
Following a clash with the local people, students of Jahangirnagar University broke into a residential hall and stayed there defying the authorities.
About 50 students of Dhaka University also started a protest on Monday and broke into the university’s Shahidullah Hall, with some returning to their designated rooms.
At the end of the meeting, Vice-Chancellor Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman outlined the reason behind them taking the decision.
“Taking an isolated and uncoordinated decision like this amid the pandemic poses a huge threat. This raises health risks, and the pandemic rules and regulations do not permit that.”
“Therefore, the announcement we earlier made regarding Mar 13 is no longer applicable.
The students, teachers and officials will be vaccinated and then the halls will be open to them from May 17."
The date of the exams would be announced two weeks ahead of holding them, he said.
Dhaka University earlier decided to reopen the halls on Mar 13 to its honours and master’s candidates ahead of their final exams after nearly a year of shutdown due to the coronavirus outbreak.
It was then said that students would have to leave them after the end of the tests and they will be given two weeks to prepare for the exams scheduled to start from Mar 27.
“We will also try to make up for lost time,” the vice-chancellor added.