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The DU syndicate, the highest policy-making body, on 18 September, decided to reopen the residential halls for examinees. The university has not yet taken a call on the resumption of physical classes.

After visiting Bijay Ekattor Hall, DU vice chancellor Akhtaruzzaman told UNB, "Today is a day of happiness. The university is the campus of students. It has again come back to life."

"The decision of allowing the first, second and third-year students to the residential halls will be taken soon. The Covid infection rate is decreasing and students are taking vaccine shots," he added.

Several residential halls like Fazlul Huq Muslim Hall, Jagannath Hall, Salimullah Muslim Hall and Bijoy Ekattor Hall have set up handwashing basins at entrances only. Dining rooms, canteens, cafeterias, reading rooms, toilets and bathrooms have all been kept sparkling clean.

Haji Muhammad Mohsin Hall provost Masudur Rahman said, “Today is the day of happiness. We will take every measure to oust illegal students from the hall to accommodate valid students."

DU proctor AKM Golam Rabbani said, "No students will be allowed to stay on after completion of their studies. We want cooperation from student leaders in enforcing health protocols."

Dhaka University has been shut since March 2020 after the country detected the first Covid-19 patient.

SOPs for dorms

The university authorities have decided to impose a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on students after the reopening of the residential halls.

The SOP includes abiding by all health guidelines, wearing masks, and maintaining social distancing.

“The SOP is divided into three parts -- housing, hygiene and medical care. No residential students can set up a floor bed under any circumstances. The surroundings of the room should be kept clean and tidy. A large room can accommodate a maximum of four students,” said Abdul Bashir, the chairman of the university provost standing committee.

Banners and festoons are visible in the residential halls and academic buildings to raise awareness.

A student must put on a mask while leaving the room, Bashir said. They must wash their hands before entering their halls. Students must avoid spitting in random places and avoid crowding in mosques and canteens.

“We cannot think that the pandemic has passed. We must take precautions to continue our lives amid this situation. We will have to follow various restrictions.

"If a student has any chronic illness, he should inform the hall administration. A student will be placed in quarantine at the medical centre if he tests Covid positive. We will not allow ‘gono rooms’ anymore," Bashir added.

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