New BHU proctor Royona Singh says no dress norms or liquor ban for woman on campus
VARANASI,Sept29: Banaras Hindu University’s newly-appointed chief proctor Royona Singh -the first woman to hold the post in BHU’s 101-year-old history — is named after a French town, and is categorical that there should be no restriction on dress and alcohol for women students at BHU. She also ruled out a ban on non-vegetarian food in the messes.
“I was born in Europe. I frequently travel to Europe and Canada. Putting a dressing restriction on girls would be like imposing it on myself. You start your day at 6am and end at 10:30pm, and if you still can’t wear what you feel comfortable in, then it is a shame in this era. I find it strange when boys use the words `skimpily clad’.If a girl feels comfortable in what she wears, what’s their objection?” Singh, a professor of anatomy at the university’s Institute of Medical Sciences, was raised in the French town of Royan for nine years in the 1980s.
She reiterated that the varsity had never imposed any restrictions on women in the past and would not do so in the future. “As far as drinking is concerned, all girls here are above 18, why should we even impose such a thought on them?” she asked.
“As far as I know, in my medical hostel, the diet is vegetarian only if a majority of the girls prefer that. For others, they still have their non-veg on particular days,” Singh told TOI.
She regretted the remarks by the warden and security staff to the molestation survivor and her friends that they should not step out of their hostels after 6pm. The incident had led to arson and clashes between BHU students and police, injuring several.
She added that she would be introducing a range of stringent measures to keep issues of eve-teasing, rowdyism or display of ostentatious wealth at BHU under check. “We even have pillars coming up for CCTV cameras. Big cars and trolleys will not be allowed via thoroughfare. Then we have barricading done to ensure that bikes don’t move fast. We are also cutting branches and twigs on trees to accommodate lights,” Singh said.
“The management thought that by putting this responsibility on me, I would endorse those things which are necessary for women’s respect. As far as female issues are concerned, I would be more sensitive. And women would be more comfortable sharing things with a female,” she said.