Just a month ago the Supreme Court of India criticized the Indian Army for not allowing women to take part in National Defence Academy (NDA) entrance exams and called out the “regressive mindset”.
But a recent outrageous incident has brought all the uplifting attitudes of the society towards women back to square one.
On Wednesday, a 19-year-old student from Biswanath Chariali appeared for the entrance exam of Jorhat’s Assam Agricultural University (AAU). She travelled to Tezpur, almost 70 km from her home in the morning to be on time for the test. She entered the exam venue – Girijananda Chowdhury Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (GIPS) on time.
And what happened next was described by Jublee as the most humiliating experience of her life. She was made to wrap a curtain around her legs in order to sit for the exam because she turned up in the examination wearing shorts.
In a telephonic interaction with a reputed media house, Jublee reported that while the security guards let her enter the premises, she was stopped by the invigilator at the exam hall. He said that she would not be allowed to enter wearing shorts. She went crying to her father who was waiting outside. After a brief dialogue, the Controller of Exams said that she would take the exam only if a pair of pants could be arranged. Hearing this her father rushed to the market to buy a pair.
In this heated tension, Jublee was losing patience and her precious time.
Her father Mr. Babul Tamuli brought a trouser from a market about 8 km away.
When he arrived at the exam centre, he was told that the problem had been resolved.
How? Jublee was given a curtain to cover her legs.
Jublee has called out the authorities for harassment and unnecessary pressure on her right before the test. She also pointed out that there was no mention of any dress code on the AAU examination admit card provided to them. She even said that a few days ago she appeared for the NEET exam wearing the exact same attire but no such incident happened.
She has described the whole incident as the most humiliating experience of her life.
This whole episode has left us with questions and only questions.
Whatever the invigilator did, was it the right thing to do?
Is this acceptable?
How do you rationally justify it?
The mental pressure Jublee and her father went through.. who is ready to address it?
How far have we come as a society with a progressive mindset?
We would like to hear some opinions without letting emotions cloud your judgement.