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After long closure due to coronavirus, the country’s public and private universities will reopen their classrooms for studies on 24 May, after Eid-ul-Fitr.

A week before that, on 17 May, the residential halls will reopen. However, resident students must take the Covid vaccine before returning to the halls. Arrangements will be made for the resident students, the resident teachers, officials and employees, to be vaccinated before the halls open. However, if anyone cannot take the vaccine on medical grounds, they will be allowed to stay.

Meanwhile, the universities will not hold exams before 24 May. Online classes will continue. In keeping with this decision, the date for BCS (Bangladesh Civil Service) exam applications and for the BCS exam, will be deferred.

Steps will be taken so that no student is deprived if they cross the age limit to apply for BCS due to delays caused by coronavirus.

Education minister Dipu Moni announced these decisions on Monday at an emergency press briefing on higher education. She said these decisions have been taken in consultation with the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the vice chancellors.

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No hurried decision will be taken that will mar the success Bangladesh has achieved in tackling coronavirus
Dipu Moni, education minister

The 43rd BCS application process is on at the moment and will continue till 31 March. According to the Public Service Commission (PSC), the 43rd BCS preliminary will be held on 6 August.

Students of various public universities are demanding that the halls be opened and in some universities, the students have even entered the halls.

Under these circumstances, the education minister said that those inside the halls at present must leave immediately. If anyone breaks the discipline of the educational institutions, the institutions will not take responsibility. She said, measures will be taken to clean the halls before reopening.

The minister went on to say that if necessary, the exam dates will be determined in coordination with the new opening date of the universities.

She said no hurried decision will be taken that will mar the success Bangladesh has achieved in tackling coronavirus. The decision will be applicable to both public and private universities.

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The prime minister has stressed that teachers, officials and employees must be vaccinated before the educational institutions reopen
Khandakar Anwarul Islam, cabinet secretary

There are 46 public universities in the country at present and 107 approved private ones. Education minister Dipu Moni said, the public universities have 220 halls and around 130,000 resident students.

Concerning the reopening of schools and colleges, education minister Dipu Moni said, the educational institutions will remain closed till 28 February.

The national technical expert committee on coronavirus will be consulted before that and a date will be given for normal classes to resume.

Earlier on Monday, a virtual meeting of the cabinet was held with prime minister Sheikh Hasina presiding. She gave instructions to review whether the situation was conducive for the reopening of educational institutions. The educational institutions have been closed for almost one year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Within the next four or five days, an inter-ministerial meeting would be formed to review the matter, cabinet secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam said at a press briefing Monday afternoon, after the cabinet meeting. He said the prime minister has stressed that teachers, officials and employees must be vaccinated before the educational institutions reopen.

Educational institutions have remained closed since 17 March last year due to the outbreak of coronavirus. The closure will continue till 28 February. However, students of various universities have been demanding that the residential halls be reopened. Even today, Monday, they have been making these demands.

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