The dress code imposed on students at Adarsh Women’s College in Bhiwani in Haryana came to light after four girls were penalised for violating it. However, the scene at the College of Agriculture at Karekere, near here, is no different as students and the teaching staff have to follow a strict dress code.
While the girls must wear salwar kameez, the women teaching staff have to wear saris. Jeans and T-shirts are banned on the campus. While so far nobody has been penalised for violating the rule, those who dare to ignore it are immediately sent back. The prestigious institute under the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, has been following the rule for many months now.
‘They don’t dare’
Mahabaleshwara Hegde, Dean in-charge of the college, told The Hindu : “Boys must wear shirts and trousers, and girls should come in salwar kameez. Students are informed about the dress code as soon as they join the college. They don’t dare to ignore it. If at all a student violates it, he or she is sent back to the hostel immediately.”
According to him, no student so far had questioned the dress code imposed by the college. “In fact, parents are happy with the decision. They appreciate our efforts to maintain decorum on the campus,” he said.
The administration follows a strict dress code for teaching staff as well. “Women have to wear sari, while men should come in formals. Women teaching staff are not allowed to come to college in salwar kameez. Wearing jeans and T-shirt is banned for them too,” he said.
The dress code has not gone down well with several staff members and students. However, they did not want to express their opposition in public or through the media.
A member of the teaching staff, on condition of anonymity, told The Hindu that many of them had opposed it, but in vain. “There is no dress code on the UAS campus. It is followed only in our college despite opposition from a section of the students and the teaching staff,” the staff member said.
The teaching faculty has to conduct field studies and hold programmes in fields as part of extension activities. “It is most inconvenient for the women staff. They feel comfortable wearing salwar kameez or jeans during such outdoor events, but now they have no option. M.A. Shankar, Dean, conducted a meeting six months ago and decided to impose the dress code for teachers.”
According to sources in the college, many students raised their voice against the rule several times, but nobody took them seriously. A few parents raised the issue with the college administration. The Dean defended it on the grounds that allowing women to wear jeans and T-shirt would spoil the academic atmosphere.
‘Allowing women to wear jeans, T-shirts will spoil the academic atmosphere’