DU’s Social Work Department students told to vacate hostel

The University of Delhi’s Department of Social Work’s Hostel authority, on May 27, has asked the students staying there to vacate their rooms, or else they will be charged Rs. 200 for rent per day, while the mess services will be discontinued.

The Department’s Hostel is currently accommodated by seven students, who belong to different parts of the country such as Ladakh, Assam, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, have been stranded at the hostel, which has a strength of 80 inmates, since the coronavirus-induced lockdown was imposed.

The notice was issued by the hostel warden Pratap Chandra Behra asking the residents to vacate the hostel. “As per the University of Delhi’s current academic calendar, the summer vacation starts from May 26, 2020. As per our hostel rules, the hostel remains closed for the residents during this period. Individualized service cannot be entertained. If a resident stays in the hostel on vacation, there will be charges/fines as per this hostel rules vide Rule no. 10.4. The mess shall remain closed from the evening of May 29, 2020” the notice reads.

Section 10.4 of the Hostel Rules of the Department of Social Work states that the residents “shall vacate their rooms within three days of completion of examinations” and the defaulters “will be charged penalty room rent of Rs. 200 per day from the date of their due date.”

The students have alleged that the warden and hostel authorities are pressuring them despite these difficult times. “Today is the last day, they closed the mess. What will we eat in the lockdown? There is no option to eat outside the hostel,” a resident of the hostel said. Another student added that there was no such notification issued by the varsity. “Since the lockdown, the residents are fully cooperating with the staff and the administration. The mess has been functional with only one staff on a rotational basis. We have been getting only daal and rice at lunch and roti-sabji on at dinner. Still, we did not complaint,” the New Indian Express reported.

One of the residents further said, “It is mental harassment on us by the hostel authority.” The residents have also written to the Proctor and the Registrar of the University and tried to contact them but have not received any response as of now.

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