No entry at Badakhshan University for female students without burqa

Outside Badakhshan University in the city of Faizabad. August 29, 2022.

Female students at Badakhshan University in the city of Faizabad in north-eastern Afghanistan have been asked to wear burqas as a “compulsory rule” to attend their classes or else they won’t be allowed to enter the compound, students said.

A meeting was held between members of the vice and virtue directorate of Taliban and Badakhshan University officials in the city of Faizabad on Saturday where the decision was made about women’s covering for attending classes at Badakhshan University.

Students said a group of them were not allowed on Monday morning even though they had normal hijab and their faces were covered with face masks.

“We were excited when we heard about the start of our classes… but when we went to the university, we were not allowed by Taliban’s vice and virtue members to enter the university despite we had hijab and we covered our face with mask, but they said we don’t have hijab and we cannot enter the compound,” said Nilofar, a student at Badakhshan University.

Many of the girls said they wore black dress and had “full covered” their body but they weren’t allowed to attend their classes.

“It is so hard for me because it is too much. We have never been asked about our problems at the university but all their issues are with women’s hijab,” Nilofar added.

Masooma, another student, said they are tired of the situation and they see it as an excuse to restrict the environment for women’s education.

“Since Taliban takeover, we, the girls, have often faced insulted. We have been given bad titles by vice and virtue officials whether in the city, in the markets or at education centers,” she said. “After closing schools, now, they want to prevent girls from going to universities.”

“They should know we cannot tolerate this situation,” she added.

Taliban officials in Badakhshan did not comment on the matter despite Amu reporters’ repeated attempts.

This comes after classes have been separated for female and male students in Balkh and Kabul universities, two major public higher education centers in the country. At Balkh University, the separation of classes for male and female students started this week.

Based on a new plan, classes for female students at Balkh University are scheduled for Saturday, Monday and Wednesday while the remaining three days have been allocated for boys.

Moreover, Monday was the 344th day secondary schools are closed for girls in Afghanistan.