Rs 500 during the ongoing even semester to ensure continuous learning
Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University in Purulia West Bengal will offer internet subsidy to its students to ensure that they are able to attend online classes amid the COVID-19 surge.
Students will receive a subsidy of Rs 500 each during the ongoing even semester. The subsidy will be transferred to the bank account of the students.
“Our university is located in an area where we get many tribal and poor students who cannot afford the cost of internet and hence we were seeing dropouts in online classes. We have decided to offer them a one-time internet subsidy for the current even semester. In these COVID-hit times, several families are facing economic hardships and we felt this would be the best possible way to ensure regular attendance in online classes,” Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University vice-chancellor Dipak Kar said.
Kar claimed that Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University was the first varsity in the state to offer such a subsidy.
“Students are now compelled to attend online classes for which they are to incur expenses towards internet usage. Considering the extra financial burden of the student in this crisis period, the university authorities have decided that students of the current even semester will be given Rs 500 as subsidy to meet the charge of Internet usage. Accordingly, the said amount will be transferred to the respective bank account of the admitted students,” read the official notification signed by registrar Nachiketa Bandyopadhya published by the university on April 3.
The university currently has 2,500 students spread across 20-departments. All admitted students (university campus) of PG II & IV semester and UG (psychology) II, IV & VI semester have been advised to send their bank details (beneficiary name, bank name, account number, IFSC code) along with the student's name, registration number, roll number, subject, semester and mobile number at firstname.lastname@example.org
When the pandemic forced classes to go online in 2020, Sidho-Kanho-Birsha University became the first university to offer classes through community radio to ensure continuous learning for students who do not have smartphones and internet. The university has been identifying students who cannot afford smartphones and giving them devices.
“We have tried to ensure that at least students do not have to think about internet usage during the current semester and attend online classes. We are the first university to do so here. Internet access and smartphones have become extremely important to ensure that online learning goes on without hindrance. We will use the university fund to offer the subsidy to students,” Kar said.
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