The Fr. Mathews College of Nursing has declared a 10-day holiday after more than 50 of its students were felled by fever.

While the management claims it is viral fever, teachers and support staff say some 10 students have typhoid, which is why the college has asked everyone to go home.

A nurse at the HMT Nursing Home (located close to the college in Jalahalli) said nine students had typhoid symptoms such as fever, cough, headache and exhaustion, and had turned up for treatment. “A large number of students were suffering from the same symptoms. We suspect it could be caused from contaminated food or water,” a nurse said. When The Hindu visited the college on Thursday, none of the students was present on the campus. A neighbour said unhygienic college premises had led to the situation. However, Renji Isaac Mathews, the managing trustee, said: “The students must have eaten outside and got viral fever. The college is not responsible for this.”

A friend of one of the students said: “Even though students had asked for leave, the management refused to send them home. Had they been granted leave, so many students would not have fallen sick.”

Rubbishing these claims, college principal Ann Suganthi claimed this was done in the “best interest” of students as they did not want them to miss their classes. Later, the college declared a 10-day holiday.

More In: Bangalore