The Bacha Khan University in Charsadda took the decision of banning smoking within the university premises along with the decision of forbidding male students and staff from sitting randomly or roaming around without purpose with female students. The decision is a surprising one.

The university issued a notification encompassing the new set of rules earlier this month.

Other than the ban on smoking and roaming with the female students, the university administration has also banned the use of rooftops of all university campus buildings, including the hostels.

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Another rule launched is the ban on ragging of new students and the use of shawls is prohibited.

The newly introduced rules received a mixed response, some students appreciated them while some raised their concerns about them.

Basit Khan—one of the university student said that the university is in a rural area and most of the locals/residents are conservative.

He added that he is in favour of the rules as it is the duty of the university administration to make sure that good environment is created and maintained within the university for the betterment of the students.

Moreover, the university has also banned all kinds of political activities on the campus.

An official of the university criticized these new set of rulings introduced by the university. He said that the administration is trying to convert the university into some primary school. People would mock and laugh at such decisions when they would be learning about them and that would badly harm the university’s reputation.

Dr Muhammad Shakeel—Chief Proctor told while talking to a local newspaper that these rulings are not new, these activities were already banned, the issuance of the notification is just to remind that the rules should be taken and implemented seriously.

He added that the sole objective of the university is to make a better environment in university for the students so that they may have just one purpose to focus on.

Relating the shawl ban he said it was a security measure. On smoking, he added that it was already not allowed at many educational institutions.

Dr Shakeel on the matter of male students sitting with girls added that we do not wish to make a primary school kind of environment, however, our objective is to make a suitable environment for students so that they could only focus on studying. He further added that the male-female students’ interaction is not completely forbidden, but if the boys and girls would be found sitting at objectionable places for hours then they would be pulled up.

Relating the punishments, he said that would be decided on case-to-case bases. If the matter would be of serious nature, then it would be referred to the university disciplinary committee who have the power to even expel students who cause rules violation.

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