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SFS protests dress code for girls in PU hostels, submits memo

Notice regarding ‘dress code for girls in hostel’ was displayed at Girls Hostel No 1’; wing members removed it after holding a meet with dean students welfare.

punjab Updated: Sep 10, 2018 14:27 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
panjab University,PU,SFS
Newly elected student council president Kanupriya interacting with girl students outside the Girls Hotel No 1 at Panjab University on Sunday. (Karun Sharma/HT)

Kanupriya, the newly elected woman president of Panjab University (PU) student council, along with the members of Students for Society (SFS) agitated against a notice regarding ‘proper dress code for girls in hostel’ on Sunday.

The members and hostel residents removed the notice, which was put on a notice board at Girls Hostel No 1, after the hostel authorities agreed to take it off in a meeting held with the hostel residents and dean student welfare.

The notice read, girls have to dress properly when they visit the mess and the canteens of the hostel.

Kanupriya said, “Such rules represent a derogatory patriarchal mindset of the authorities. How can they govern the dress code of females at places which they claim is our home away from home. Clearly, moral policing has no place on PU campus.”

The students also submitted a memorandum to the warden of the hostel. In the memorandum, the students stated that the rules regarding entry of the visitors must be put in accordance with central prospectus rules. The students also raised the matter of late entry, highlighting that late entry timing starts from 10.00am, whereas it should start from 11.00 to 11.30 pm as per the norms. Besides, the party members highlighted the issue of moral policing faced by the students.

SFS member Hassanpreet said, “SFS has always fought against gender discrimination and patriarchal rules. We will not bear such misogyny inside the campus. Even if notices like these are backed by their presence inside the hostel prospectus, they will be challenged and eliminated.”

When contacted, dean students welfare (DSW) Neena Caplash said, “The rule was not new. In fact, it has been in the rulebook for many years now. The notice was again placed on the notice board for the newcomers”

On dress code, she said, “We have not prescribed a dress code. A proper dress is a vague term as it may mean different things to different people.”

“The hostel rulebooks are updated regularly with due permission of the governing body,” she added.

Girl Hostel No 1 warden Suman Mor said, “We put up notices to aware newcomers about important hostel rules every year. We remove the notice after some time. It’s nothing new as it is already mentioned in the rule book. Students do not read the rule books.”

First Published: Sep 10, 2018 13:47 IST