Without a hostel, foreign students at BU face multiple challenges
Samia (name changed on request), a student of Bangalore University from Bangladesh, came to Bangalore in 2019 for her postgraduate course, but had a heartbreaking experience trying to find suitable accommodation.
“As a girl, a hostel would be the safest place for me. But I had no contact when I arrived. I spent the first few days in a hotel, but it was getting expensive. More later I moved to paid accommodation (PG), but food was a real problem,” she recalls. After falling ill, she decided to move to a rented house, but had to wait a long time to save enough. for the surety.
A significant number of international students come to Bangalore University (BU) every year to pursue their higher education, but the lack of hotel facilities poses a huge challenge to them.
BU allocates more than 100 places to international students from different countries through scholarships and self-financing each academic year. There is a pre-coaching center in Jnanabharathi campus for students at affordable rates for a short stay of few days when first coming after admission.
Most students think that a university hostel would solve a lot of problems for them: finding a house in a new place, the huge amount of deposit, compiling residency permits and registration, etc. Those who can benefit from hostel facilities can easily obtain residence proof certificates. .
But BU international students are going through a tough time as they have to get all the documents within 14 days of arriving in India. This includes finding a home and convincing the home owner/PG for residential proof. To obtain proof of residence, it is also mandatory to submit the details of the owner. Those who don’t will have to pay a penalty.
Brayan from Niger, who is studying at BU, said that although their scholarship includes house rent, the hostel facilities can be a safe zone for international students. However, he pointed out that daily adaptation to local food can be a problem for some.
On the other hand, Mangalore University and Mysore University offer hostels for international students. Najibullah, a final year student at Mangalore University in Afghanistan, said they were provided with a rented house where they could cook for themselves. “It’s good that as soon as we arrived here we found accommodation even though there are a lot of formalities to complete in a short time. For all official work, proof of residence is required. A hostel address helps to complete all the work on time,” he said.
Mysore University also offers hostels, although the residential areas are some distance from the campus. “Even then, it’s a huge relief for us because we don’t have to worry about all the other hiring and official work,” said a student from Mali. Inside the room they have cooking facilities so they can cook for themselves. “Authorities will not take responsibility for the food as each student has different tastes and dislikes,” he added.
When contacted, a spokesperson for BU’s international department said: ‘Students come from different countries and they have different food choices. With the limited budget of any public university, it is difficult to meet all the requirements. As PG students, they also prefer to live on their own. It is easy to find a house to rent in Bangalore, while it is more difficult in other cities. However, if students wish to stay in a hostel, they can submit a proposal to the university through the international department.