The Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has ordered a dress code for female students of Abdullah College - no T-shirts and jeans, only salwar-kameez and dupatta.
The provost of Abdullah Hall (hostel) has issued a notice warning that "if any girl is caught violating the dress code, she will be fined Rs 500".
The varsity administration has not stopped at that. The female students are not allowed in the Central Library of AMU, also called Maulana Azad Library, whereas male students have been given permission. In addition, the girls cannot use internet in their hostel.
Interestingly, the notice also asks the girls to keep "only one mobile phone and take meals in the dining hall only".
Dr Ghazala Parveen, provost of the hall, told Hindustan Times, "Yes, I have issued this notice. This has been done on the direction of the vice chancellor."
Some time back, AMU vice-chancellor (V-C) Gen Zameeruddin Shah had issued an appeal asking the girls to wear "decent clothes" and now a proper notice has been issued with a warning of fine for violation.
Several girls consider the diktat as an attack on their freedom but no one is prepared to speak up openly against it.
Meanwhile, women's organisations of the city have protested against the diktat. They alleged that the V-C was making AMU "a centre of Jamat-e-Islami and is continuously negating the dreams of Sir Syed, who was in favour of liberal education among Muslims."
Reacting to the AMU order, social analyst N Jamal Ansari said: "The varsity is not the zamindari of the V-C and such a draconian order is nothing but a cover-up for the failures of the V-C on the academic front."
Fehmeeda Parveen, president of 'Save Women' organisation said: "The dress code is unfortunate as there is no such code for boys. It is a clear violation of women's rights. Perhaps, the V-C wants to make AMU a Jamat-e-Islami madarsa."