New Delhi: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay has decided to run its next semester completely online, in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, becoming the first IIT to take the decision.
IIT Delhi is also likely to hold the coming semester completely online and might call students back to campus only in December. However, the institute has not made any official announcement yet.
IIT Bombay director, Subhasis Chaudhuri, wrote of the development on his official Facebook page Wednesday midnight.
“After a long deliberation in the Senate, we have decided today that the next semester will be run purely in the online mode so that there is no compromise on the safety and well being of the students,” he wrote.
Chaudhuri also made an appeal for donations for the institute’s students who come from economically weaker families.
“To ensure that our students begin the academic year without further delay, we are planning on extensive online classes, details of which will be informed to all students in due course of time,” he wrote. “However, a large section of our students come from economically less privileged families and would require a helping hand to equip them with the IT hardware to take these online classes. We look forward to your overwhelming support to help these bright young minds to continue their learning without any further hindrances or delays.”
IIT Delhi likely to follow suit
In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, IITs have been deliberating upon delaying calling students to campus this year. Institutes that can manage to run online classes are preparing to do just that.
On Wednesday, Delhi overtook Mumbai in the number of coronavirus cases reported by recording 3,788 new cases. As of Thursday morning, 70,390 cases have been reported from Delhi, of which 26,588 are active. Mumbai currently has 69,625 cases.
IIT Delhi director, V. Ramagopal Rao told ThePrint, “There is all likelihood that we will run our next semester completely online. All the theory parts of the courses will be taught online and the practicals will be completed once the students are back on campus.”
“Looking at the alarming number of cases in Delhi, it won’t be possible to call students back to campus for a long time,” he added. “PhD students will come whenever they have to do some practicals or research-related work. We are thinking that the freshers will be able to join the campus only in December this year.”
The institute will take a final call after the IIT Council meeting, slated for this week, takes place, wherein other IITs will decide on their plans for the academic year.