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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Punjab Higher Education Minister needs to be removed from his position

We are fighting a war on terror, a war against extremist and the war against a narrative that enforces decisions on women. On the one hand, many parliamentarians – women and men spent March 8th, International women’s day inaugurating functions around the country and talking about the rights of women.

On the other hand, members of provincial parliaments are actually talking about making wearing of the hijab mandatory at government and private colleges. It is not clear why such parliamentarians who are still living in the middle ages are allowed to sit in parliament. There is no wonder we still have honor killing and other crimes against women when such people are making legislation in the country.

Read more: Let Women be themselves

Nabila Hakim Ali, PTI MPA, submitted a resolution in a session of Punjab Assembly on Wednesday, demanding to make hijab mandatory at college-level throughout the province. Later, it was withdrawn for saying it was a typo and it had not been meant.

A day earlier, the Punjab Higher Education minister, talked about making ‘hijab’ mandatory and grace marks to be given to women for covering themselves.

Syed Raza Ali Gilani, Punjab Higher Education Minister, on Tuesday, said, “Observance of hijab should be made mandatory for college girls.” Further, he added, it is beneficial for those students who fail to meet the attendance requirement as five percent grace marks would be awarded to them.

read more: Nike jolts the liberals with its “Hijab Pro”

After a furor was created by the media, Punjab government immediately rejected the proposal. Raja Jahangir, Information Secretary, provided clarification, “No such summary has been received by the provincial cabinet from the Higher Education Department.”

Further, Mr. Jahangir said, the minister cannot make such rules without the approval of cabinet while adding, it is, “beyond his competence to make a policy decision without the government’s approval.”

Pakistan already has major quality issues with its education system both in terms of what is taught and learned. Now with such suggestions an even bigger joke is being played on the Pakistani citizens.

Read more: How to attract the best and brightest into teaching our future generations?

Imagine a girl who is about to fail becomes a doctor because she scrapes through with the extra 5 percent. This girl then goes onto treat patients not because of her competence, but because she dressed in a manner ‘suitable’ to the minister. The best would be if the minister concerned should then be offered to her as a patient to treat.