GEORGE TOWN: Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) said that it is closely monitoring the situation of its 350 students who are studying medicine in Belgaum in Karnataka, India, during the country’s 21-day total lockdown.
In a statement, it said that discussions pertaining to its students’ health, welfare and safety are being done on a daily basis via its Covid-19 Nerve Centre.
USM authorities have been closely interacting with other related agencies, including Wisma Putra, the Higher Education Ministry, Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA), the Malaysia Consulate-General’s Offices in Mumbai and Chennai, as well as with the Education Ministry there to ensure the students’ wellbeing.
“USM authorities are also preparing a dedicated team to be flown to India once the lockdown period is over; or, through alternate means if given permission by the authorities.
“USM always keeps tabs on and oversees the affairs and progress of students at all of its campuses; and fulfills the responsibility entrusted by the parents and caretakers of the students, while at the same time providing support during this current period of uncertainty,” it said today.
Recently, the Malaysian Islamic Consumers Association (PPIM) urged USM to come clean on the status of its students currently stranded in India.
The 350 students are undergoing the USM-Karnataka Lingayat Education (KLE) International Medical Programme in Belgaum.
Since the lockdown was announced, parents have requested that their children be flown home – however, the request was denied, PPIM claimed.
Nevertheless, USM is still in discussions with Wisma Putra on the matter.
“As mentioned by Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar, students who are on foreign soil need to remain at their resident campuses and to abide by current instructions from local authorities.
“Any journey undertaken to a home country during a lockdown period, and while there is a pandemic outbreak would only heighten risk, not only from being infected, but also being stranded without proper medical support and so on,” the statement added.
Article by: New Straits Times
USM MONITORING SITUATION OF STUDENTS STANDED IN INDIA