Published: 21st December 2021
Relax curfew hours past 6 pm in accordance with Kerala HC order: Students protest outside Kerala college
The issue escalated very recently after a student had openly rejected the university's award citing patriarchal practices
A group of women students of Aluva's Union Christian College staged a strike in front of the college premises, seeking that its women's hostel withdraw its curfew hours, in accordance with a Kerala High Court order from 2019. While a Kerala Government notification had asked colleges to extend their hostel curfew hours to 9.30 pm, multiple students told EdexLive that the college's hostel still imposes a curfew of 6 pm for its women students.
"We have been protesting against these regressive norms for a while now. This is the first time that we actually organised a protest," says Tessa Kuriakose, a BA History student. While she said that over 90 students took part in the protest, the issue escalated off late, after a student had openly rejected the university's award citing patriarchal practices. In November, Mileena Saju, the university's History department 2021 topper had called out these on social media. Talking to us at that time, she said, "The college, even now, doesn't permit the residents of its women's hostel to stay out beyond 6 pm. They aren't allowed to go out during weekends and if they wish to do so, they have to do a plethora of paperwork."
Mileena also pointed out that the residents of the men's hostel do not have to follow these rules. Students had also accessed a letter that the residents of the hostel have written to the college management, asking them to extend the curfew hours to 9.30 pm. "None of the men's hostel residents supported our strike, fearing that this may take away their privileges," said Tessa. While she said that the college management hasn't given a solid response yet, it has promised to hold a governing body meeting on January 3.
While lawyers whom EdexLive spoke to had confirmed that the college imposing a 6 pm curfew is in direct violation of a High Court order, the students said that they would move court if nothing positive comes out of the meeting on January 3.