The PWD set up a scaffolding inside Eden Hindu Hostel in north-central Kolkata to start repairs on Wednesday morning, three days after the Presidency University students staying at the hostel wrote to education minister Bratya Basu that concrete chunks were falling from the ceiling.
The students had also written to Presidency vice-chancellor Anuradha Lohia listing the woes they had been encountering over the past one-and-a-half months.
PWD engineers said there was no immediate reason for worry as the structure was fine.
“A part of the ground-floor ceiling of the hostel needs to be repaired. That will be done in the next few days. The patch was plastered earlier but the plaster has come off,” said an engineer.
A team that had visited the hostel on Tuesday noticed that there was water leakage from the first-floor wall adjoining a washroom. Damp has set in on the portion of the wall where water has seeped.
“The seepage was occurring from a spot adjacent to the washroom on the first floor of the hostel to a wall underneath. This is an arched brick structure and the seepage is occurring from a joint of two walls. It will take time because the washroom is located adjoining the joint,” the engineer said.
The team that visited the hostel had scanned the building thoroughly to identify all problem points. On Wednesday, team members said the hostel, established in 1886, had no other structural challenges.
A section of Presidency students had forced their way into the hostel on March 17. The students said they had to do so because the authorities had been failing to reopen the hostel despite the resumption of offline classes on February 3.