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IIT Madras Put Under Lockdown Due to COVID-19 Spike Within Campus; Institute Reports 71 New Cases Over Two Weeks

The Indian Institution of Technology, Madras has been put under temporary lockdown after the institution reported 71 new COVID-19 cases in last two weeks, with highest single day spike reported on Sunday when 32 people within the campus tested positive for coronavirus. The Tamil Nadu government has reportedly instructed IIT-Madras to test all the student present in the campus for COVID-19. The institute has asked the students and staff on campus to immediately contact the IIT Madras Hospital in case of any symptoms.

According to health authorities, 71 COVID-19 cases were reported in the last two weeks within the campus, of which 66 are students, four mess staff and one from resident quarters. The institute on Sunday released a circular notifying the shutting down of the campus, all the centers and libraries till further notice, due to the spike in the coronavirus cases in the campus. It has asked all the day scholars and non-resident faculty to work from home and all the resident students and staff are instructed to confine themselves within their quarters and follow are precautionary norms.

The statement added that the institute is currently finalising Standard Operating Procedures to determine how many scholars and project staff can work in each lab based on its size, ventilation, etc safely while maintaining social distancing. If any research scholar wish to return earlier will be permitted to do so if they are willing to stay off-campus similar to project staff, till their turn came to be accepted in the hostels, and provided their lab could accommodate them.

IIT-Madras assured that all the guidelines issued by the state government in respect of COVID-19 are duly followed. As per the official data, there are nine student hostels and one guest house from which COVID-19 cases were reported. A total of 774 students are currently residing on the campus, of which samples were collected from 408 students as on date. As per thew reports, Krishna hostel reported the maximum cases of 22 followed by 20 cases from Jamuna.