Bengaluru : The Karnataka government has decided to reopen diploma and degree colleges including engineering colleges after November 17 that were shut after Covid pandemic outbreak since March. This was announced by the Deputy Chief Minister C. N. Ashwath Narayana, who is also in-charge of higher education ministry, on Friday. The Deputy Chief Minister claimed that the colleges can reopen after Deepavali festival that ends on November 17. Speaking to reporters after the high-level meeting with the Chief Minister, B.S. Yediyurappa here, Narayana said that the state government has decided to equally integrate both online and offline education system to help college students. He added that the student who want to come to college “must have” their parental consent. “The state government will surely take care and guide college managements to implement standard operating procedures (SOPs) to start their colleges. We will also decide how many batches each college can have,” he explained in response to a question.
Narayana claimed that the state government was following the UGC guidelines to reopen colleges. “As per their guidelines, we have already conducted online classes and as the UGC had not put any mandatory clause to reopen colleges. The state government has opted to open after Deepavali,” he said. Answering to a question, Narayana said that the higher education department submitted a detailed report on how the colleges would reopen and function. He also added each and every college will have taskforce that will monitor the implementation of SOPs. Replying cryptically about other educational institutions being reopened, Narayana said that reopening of undergraduate colleges would happen in a phased manner. “We need to take stock of how the present decision of reopening degree colleges would pan out in the days to come. The number of covid cases in the state have seen a steady dip in numbers as compared to the number of recoveries. For the last eight days, less than 10,000 positive cases were registered despite the number of testing has gone up.