Harbouring the Freshmen: G. D. Birla Hall of Residence
Ghanshyam Das Birla Hall of Residence, nicknamed as GDB, houses the first-year male students in collaboration with its neighboring hall MV. The hall is preferred over MV for its comparatively larger rooms. The hall enjoys a close proximity of stationery shop Rangoli, Amul confectionery, SBI ATM, eateries such as Jo’z restaurant, Hexagon, Mokshaa Xpress and the academic area (especially the Lecture Annexure). It sets an excellent ambiance for the beginners to get off the mark. Team MM presents the annual review of this hall addressing the issues along with all updates and recent upgradations.
The hostel comprises three blocks namely A, B, and C. The blocks A and B are three-storeyed and C block is four-storeyed. The hall has an approximate count of 200 rooms with B. Tech freshers residing only in blocks A and B, and M. Tech and Ph.D. freshers in C block. The blocks A and B have double-seated rooms whereas block C has single-seated rooms. The rooms are spacious enough with two tube-lights, LAN ports, shelves, desks, chairs per room and one fan. The rooms are whitewashed and the doors painted on an annual basis.
When asked about the allocated budget of the current year, the Warden Prof S.K. Sahoo said,
It depends on the number of boarders. This year we have 536 boarders and the fee is 2400 per person, so we a budget of 12 lacs 86 thousand rupees.
The hall can be rated as quite neat and clean if the rain-time water seepages are not counted. The hall severely suffers from the midnight nuisance of the dogs that slip into the corridors through the gates of the lawns. The corridors and washrooms are swept on a daily basis and the rooms are cleaned once a week by the sweepers. In this regard Malaya Kumar Debata, the general secretary of GDB said,
I have made a schedule for weekly cleaning of the rooms with particular timings. A and B blocks are to be cleaned on Saturday and block C will be covered on Sunday.
Lawns are maintained regularly. An adequate number of dustbins are available in the corridors which are emptied on a regular basis. Recently, the boarders have been facing an increased nuisance of insects. Nothing much has been done to curb it except spraying insecticides on Sundays, which doesn’t seem to be effective enough. The washrooms have been recently renovated, and mirrors, mugs, and buckets have been installed as per need. Although the geysers are present, most of them are not in a working condition. Even after renovation, there were complaints about missing fittings in the washrooms and poor condition of the doors.
About renovation, the Warden clarified—
All the toilets have been renovated except those of C block which is currently in progress. The reason for the renovation being water leakage from taps and also repairing old toilets.
Water and power supply:
The hall suffers from power cuts as frequent as the other boys’ hostels. There is no power backup in the hall. During the mid-semesters, complaints came that there had been power cuts without any notification to the boarders.
The water supply also fails to provide an uninterrupted service as the boarders counter interruptions in water supply in crucial hours such as early in the morning. Coming to the case of potable water, there is a sufficient number of aqua-guards and water coolers. But, not all of them are found to be in working condition.
The hall shares a common mess with MV, named the R. K. Patel Cafeteria. The mess is spacious and air-ventilated with an adequate number of tables and seats. The menu is decided by the mess secretary and changed each semester including suggestions from the boarders. Food is served four times a day with special meals on Sundays. According to most of the former boarders of the hall, the quality of the food served in the mess decreases as the days pass. The food is mostly well cooked but usually compromises on taste. Recent events of insects being found in the meals have led to dissatisfaction amongst the boarders and it raises a question on the health standards of the cafeteria.
When the Warden was contacted about the procedure to complain about unhygienic food/insects in it, he said,
If one faces any problem, contact the mess secretary as soon as possible. If the discrepancy lies in the rice, the brand is verified upon else the vegetables are routinely checked. If the problem continues, then he can immediately contact the warden.
The hall stalls two canteens below the mess to satisfy the untimely cravings of the boarders. One of them is a day canteen while the other one stays open till midnight (night canteen). There is another internal day canteen in B block on the ground floor.
The hall has a gym room stuffed with advanced accessories which will reopen from this Monday (29th Oct). There are two common rooms with TVs and benches installed (ground and 2nd floor) and there is a reading room on the 1st floor with an adequate number of tables & chairs too.
For recreation, the hall has two badminton courts and a volleyball court along with well-maintained lawns which often turns into cricket or football fields for the boarders. The hall houses an indoor badminton stadium along with table-tennis facility in the game room as well.
There is a cycle stand shared with MV with pumping facility and a person to look after them. The borders also have an indoor stationery shop for students’ commodities. The front yard of the hall is lavished with a variety of plants sprinkled with colorful seasonal blossoms.
The hall is certainly suffering from a number of nuisances. But all said, GDB, Hall no. 5 has been welcoming the freshman boys with its colleague MV since a long past. It deserves an applause for the constant service in providing a suitable abode for the grooming of the debutants.