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New Delhi, April 7, 2020
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has issued an advisory to universities and colleges to take necessary steps for the mental health and well-being of students in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.
In view of the present scenario, Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' had directed the UGC and heads of autonomous institutions in this regard.
UGC has asked the universities and college to set up help lines for mental health, psychosocial concerns and well-being of students in universities and colleges to be regularly monitored and managed by counsellors and other identified faculty members.
They have been told to conduct regular mentoring of students through interactions and appeals and letters to remain calm and stress-free. This can be achieved through telephones, e-mails, digital and social media platforms, an official press release said.
The universities and colleges have also been advised to form COVID-19 help groups of students, headed by hostel wardens or senior faculty who can identify friends and classmates in need of help and provide immediate necessary help.
The UGC has also asked the universities and colleges to share the links of videos put up by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare https://www.mohfw.gov.in/ with students and faculty via e-mail, through social media like Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter, and so on.
The UGC has also set up a psychosocial toll-free helpline at 0804611007.