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Dhaka Tribune

3 DU students on hunger strike demand shutdown of campus

If one gets affected with virus, the situation will become too vulnerable to control, they say

Update : 14 Mar 2020, 11:27 PM

Three third-year students of Dhaka University (DU) have gone on a fast unto death demanding cancellation of all academic and residential activities as fear grips general students over the global outbreak of coronavirus.

The three students are KM Tourjo of Political Science department, Md Zunaed Hossain Khan of Psychology and Md Hasan Biswas of Television Film and Photography department. 

They began their protest around 9pm on Saturday at the base of the Raju memorial sculpture of TSC.

Hasan Biswas, one of the striking students, told Dhaka Tribune: “The situation can be apocalyptic and thousands of students may fall victim to the virus if the university authorities do not suspend academic activities and have the dormitories where first year students reside as also the general room where thirty to forty students are housed vacated.”

KM Tourjo said: “The first year students are living in the room, in a huddle. A similar situation prevails in the classrooms. If one gets affected the situation will become too vulnerable to control.”

Talking to Dhaka Tribune, Md Zunaed Hossain Khan said: “We are not leaving this place till we are assured of a safe situation in the university. The campus should be closed.”

Meanwhile, students of several departments of the university, including Economics and Zoology, have announced their intention to boycott academic activities in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. The university authorities have not accepted the demand.

Talking to Dhaka Tribune on Saturday morning, DU Vice-Chancellor Prof M Akhtaruzzaman said: “If we close down the campus, it will create more risks. Since I am here as a guardian of the students, I cannot put their lives at risk since we are like family members.”

The Vice-Chancellor suggested avoiding mass gatherings inside the campus.

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