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Rajasthan CM amends college dress code diktat, says it’s voluntary

The Rajasthan government, which drew flak for introducing uniform in its colleges, has revised its decision and made uniforms voluntary

jaipur Updated: Mar 13, 2018 22:31 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje.(PTI Photo.)

The Rajasthan government, which drew flak for introducing uniform in its colleges, has revised its decision and made uniforms voluntary.

Civil society organizations, who criticized the decision, however, are not satisfied with the revision and insisted that the decision needs to be withdrawn completely.

The Rajasthan Directorate of College Education sent out a circular to 219 government-run colleges in the state on March 4, with details of what male and female students should wear from the next academic session.

The colleges were asked to inform the directorate about the colour decided by them by March 12.

On Tuesday, chief minister Vasundhara Raje tweeted: “It was brought to my notice that many students are not happy with the decision. I have therefore asked that uniforms be made voluntary rather than compulsory.”

“We are here to provide our girls with whatever they require in order to excel in their education,” she tweeted with the hastag GirlsFirst.

The circular issued by the directorate, mandated shirt and pant for men and salwar or saree and blouse for women. There are more than 400,000 students, including 175,000 women, in government colleges in Rajasthan.

Earlier, on March 7, the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) said the decision to implement a particular dress code in colleges was “unconstitutional, retrogressive, patriarchal and authoritarian step”.

State PUCL president Kavita Srivastav said a revision is not enough. “We want the government to withdraw the order completely. That was our demand. A little bit of revision will not solve any purpose. We want the idea of a uniform in higher education to do,” she said.

State higher education minister Kiran Maheshwari had defended the decision, saying it has been done on demand by students.

“During a youth dialogue programme, students demanded a uniform to check entry of outsiders to college campuses. For women, saree is not compulsory; they can also wear salwar suit,” she said.

The CM’s tweet also has a reference of this. “The directorate for college education had issued an order to introduce uniforms in government colleges based on the suggestions of students representatives,” she tweeted.

Last year, the school education department changed the colour of school uniform to light brown, similar to the new colour of RSS uniform.

First Published: Mar 13, 2018 21:14 IST