Coronavirus: Suspended international flights leave foreign students dejectedUpdated: Mar 23, 2020 22:49 IST
With educational institutes suspending classes till March 31 in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, foreign students, studying in district colleges, are feeling dejected as international flights have been suspended.
They said with the number of coronavirus cases rising daily, they are worried about their family members.
Scores of students from various countries, including Africa, Indonesia, Bhutan, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Nepal, and the US are studying at Punjab College of Technical Education and CT Group of Institutes in Ludhiana. Majority of them had visited their country last year during the summer break. All students are staying in hostels and are being provided basic facilities including food and medical care.
A BPharma student, Gwantwa Absalom, from Tanzania, said, “I start the day by talking to my parents. In fact, in the wake of the virus, I now talk to them for longer periods as compared to earlier. I had visited my country in June and was planning to go again during the break.”
“When the college authorities suspended classes for 15 days, I decided to visit my parents. But it was not feasible for me to go for a short duration and that too in the middle of the session”, said the 22-year-old, adding that she solves the assignments given by college teachers to keep herself busy and stays in touch with them through video calls.
Ntsukunyane Victor Ntlhoki, 19, from Lesotho, said, “When the number of cases rose in China, I made no plan to go home. I felt that by April, it will subside but in fact, it turned into a pandemic. The situation worries me as the number of cases are still increasing and the state government has imposed a curfew,” adding that he stays in touch with his family to know about their well-being.
I stay busy either by reading books or watching movies or listening to music, he said.
“I follow the precautions, stay in my room and sometimes talk to my hostel mates so that I don’t feel isolated,” he added.
Suraj Dhungyel, 21, from Bhutan, said, “I miss my family and often talk to them when I feel homesick. Earlier, I used to talk to them twice a week, but in the present circumstance, I interact with them through video calls almost every day.”
He said, “I had visited my country in May and had stayed there for two months. The high rate at which the number of Covid-19 cases are rising in India worries me. To pass time, I surf the internet and complete the assignments given by teachers. I call my parents three times a day and am planning to go back to Bhutan as I feel that the situation is better there.”