In Gujarat in a girls hostel located in Bhuj, 68 girls were allegedly asked to strip naked to prove their menstruation status after authorities found a sanitary pad in the garden area on campus. The took Suo moto cognizance of the incident was taken by the National Commission for Women(NCW).
This shameful activity was conducted by the principal Rita Raniga and teachers of Sahjanand Girls’ Institute which is run by Swaminarayan Temple followers. The issue arose when a soiled sanitary napkin was found in the garden outside the hostel on Monday. Suspecting one of the students who live in the hostel must have thrown out of the window the hostel authority wanted to find the culprit who violated the menstrual cycle norms of the college.
This was informed to principal Raniga who summoned all the students to the common room to give a severe lecture about the incident and about Swaminarayan sect rules asking the culprit to declare themselves. Two girls did come forward but the principal suspected foul play and checked every student one by one in the washroom in front of four female teachers and the principal herself.
In the statement of a student, it was some sheer mental torture leaving them with no words to describe it. According to another student, these women were interrupted during class and asked to reveal who was on periods after which they forced the people to go through the check-test. In the words of another student, this was routine happening.
The NCW has planned to step in with setting up an enquiry team to look into the matter. NCW has also written to the trustee and principal of Sahjanand Girls’ Institute to give an explanation for the occurrence of such a shameful incident. The chief of Delhi Commission for Women called the whole incident sick and cheap online with a link to the story. Though denied by the trustees, the college is said to mandate graduate students to stay in the hostel and if they do want to attend court hearings they should leave the hostel after signing a declaration denying anything that happened to them.
Authorities of Kutch University have been informed were a five-member team including Darshna Dholakia the vice-chancellor in charge and two other senior female professors visited the college. The students were asked to forget the incident by the college trustee Pravin Pindoria saying that the teachers might have enforced the sect rules a bit strict but the girls should follow as they were already informed of the rules.
Some of these rules involve girls with periods will stay in the basement area and not hostel rooms. They are not allowed to socialize or enter the kitchen or place of worship. They have to keep separate items including utensils and clean all of them after the period is over. What’s worse as girls on their periods are supposed to sit in the last bench of the classrooms.