University of Dhaka: Common room of Masterda Suryasen Hall of Dhaka University with three rooms. This common room with rooms 177, 178 and 179.
As it is closed all around, the electric lamp has to be kept burning even during the day.
Students are staying in this unhealthy environment of dust, dirt, unclean beds that are several years old. This common room is known as ‘Laden’s Cave’ to the students.
According to Hall sources, once the rooms were dining storerooms, where various things including cooking pots and pans were kept. However, after it was abandoned, it was converted into a public room by Chhatra League leaders. First and second year students got beds on the floor.
It can be seen from the surface, more than 15 students are staying in rooms 177 and 178. But it is difficult to have four people in a room like a shack.
According to the information provided by the students, there were more than 40 first-year students in room number 179 last year as well. However, due to the reduction of seats and elections this year, many students did not attend due to the fear of political conflict.
A student, on condition of anonymity, said that many strangers sometimes come to Laden’s cave. Lack of doors creates insecurity. Moreover, there is sand and dirt around. Beds and bedspreads have been left uncleaned for the past two and a half years. As a result, various physical problems including itching occur here.
BanglaNews’ investigation shows that not only the Laden Cave, but also 20 such rooms controlled by the Chhatra League in Suryasen Hall are used as public rooms. Where there are more than two hundred students in the first and second year.
177, 178, 179, 201(a), 226, 226 (a), 249, 301 (a), 326, 326 (a), 349, 401, 426, 426 (a), 449, 501, 501 (a) ), 526,526 (a) Room number 549, 626 is used as common room.
Chhatra League Central Committee President Saddam Hossain, General Secretary Sheikh Wali Asif Inan and DU Branch President Mazharul Kabir Shayan, General Secretary Tanveer Hasan Saikat’s followers controlled the rooms.
Chhatra League Central Committee President Saddam Hossain said that we have been demanding full residential university since the beginning. As soon as students are admitted, they will have a registration number, ID card, library card as well as a room and seat number. Dhaka University has already taken the master plan. By implementing it, we strongly demand to solve the housing crisis.
According to the annual report of 2021-22, the total students of Suryasen Hall including residential, dual-resident and non-resident are 1 thousand 851. However, there are a total of 1 thousand 86 residential and dual-residential seats. Among them, the actual number of seats is even less due to various reasons including occupying the room by the student body of the ruling party, staying in the hall under the political umbrella even after the completion of Masters.
According to hall office sources, although the number of seats is 1 thousand 86, more than 1 thousand 600 students live in the hall including common rooms.
Apart from the accommodation crisis of the students, the condition of the canteen in Suryasen Hall is also not good. Students complain that the quality of food is not good and the environment is not healthy.
Adnan Jobair, a second year student of the hall, said that the quality of food in Suryasen Hall is poor compared to other halls of the university. At the same time, the environment here is not good. When I wash my hands in the basin, I vomit. So I don’t eat food.
There is a shortage of seats in the lecture hall of Suryasen Hall as well. There are about 230 seats in three reading rooms but hardly any regular students can study here. Many of the seniors occupy the space with piles of books. As there was no job even after the completion of Masters, these seniors took the seat and prepared for the job.
Tahmidur Rahman, a fourth-year student of the hall, said that usually first and second-year students do not get such a place in the reading room. Many people pile books as if that seat belongs to them. He always sits on that seat.
Meanwhile, several students have complained about the lift in the hall. They told BanglaNews that the lift is already closed for two days. Then the elevator in front of the dam on the southwest side shuts down suddenly every week due to mechanical problems. It can be seen that every month the hall lift is closed for a few days just for repairs.
Mahin An Noor, a student of the mass communication and journalism department of the hall, said that the lift is closed on Friday-Saturday during the week. During the remaining five days, the lift is often closed due to mechanical problems. A notice is photocopied in the office. Every time it gets hung up. Earlier the situation was worse. At that time, the elevator probably ran two days a week.
Zakir Hossain Bhuiyan, principal of the hall, said that we have many problems. We are trying to resolve all of them quickly.
About the seat problem, he said, the seat problem is there. Many remain under the political umbrella even after completing their Masters. But we have decided to throw out those who are overdue for a particular session. Then maybe the seat problem will be reduced a little.
He said about the quality of food in the canteen, we always keep the canteen under observation. But sometimes gives bad food. If scolded, it will be fixed again. Fixing food has become a big challenge. I also took a bond from him. I have also said to throw it out. But no one else wants to come here. So he has to be kept.
Bangladesh Time: 1124 hours, November 3, 2023