Published: 19th March 2021
Did students flee after Manipal Institute of Technology campus was declared a containment zone?
The students had watched the news of their campus being declared a containment zone and they started leaving the campus, said a source at the university
The Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT) campus in Manipal was declared a containment zone by the Udupi administration on March 18, after 59 people tested COVID-19 positive over the past few days. But before the lockdown was imposed, many students allegedly left the campus, said sources at the university.
The students had watched the news of their campus being declared a containment zone and they started leaving the campus. "A lot of students broke the rules and fled. Some were turned back from the airport but still, some of them managed to slip through. After that, the police blocked the gates around 3 pm. After that no one could leave," said a source on campus. "People staying outside the campus in apartments are still leaving," they added.
But the police said that no one was allowed to go without a negative RT-PCR test. Manjunath, police inspector, Manipal police station said that some students had to be stopped as they tried to go without RT-PCR negative reports. Those with the negative report were allowed to go. The rest were stopped, said sources.
District Health Officer Dr Sudhidra Chandra Suda had said yesterday that 33 people tested positive for COVID-19 in the Udupi district on Wednesday out of whom 27 were from MIT. "Most students who tested positive are from other states. Some first contacts with the COVID-19 positive people have also tested positive. The district health administration has declared the campus as a containment zone," he said.
In a notification issued on Wednesday by Udupi Deputy Commissioner and Chairperson of the District Disaster Management Authority, the district administration said that 59 patients were found positive for Coronavirus on the campus. "Faculty and essential duty staff of MIT campus are allowed in the campus with proper pass/identification," the notification read.
Testing is still on and all those staying on campus have to be tested. "Entire campus has to be tested. 248 people were tested in the last two days. 169 people were tested yesterday," said a doctor associated with the Kasturba Medical College.
Addressing the students, the Director of MIT in the notification said that the Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) administration has decided to conduct all theory classes in online mode and defer the laboratory, practical, contact classes later. The pending end-semester examination of the first semester B Tech will be rescheduled to a later date. MIT is a constituent unit of MAHE. Mentioning that there is a sudden increase in the COVID cases in Udupi district, including MIT Manipal campus, in the last few days, the note said, "In view of this, the district administration of Udupi taking certain measures to contain the spread of COVID infection, including restricting the movement of students in certain areas of Manipal, particularly the MIT campus." it said.