Kashmiri students forced to shave beards in TN medical college, alleges student body; urges CM intervention

J-K Students Association alleged Kashmiri students of Chengalpattu Medical College are being forced to shave beards to enter premises.

J-K students' body urges MK Stalin to intervene in incident where Kashmiri students at medical college were forced to shave beards. (Image: Official website)J-K students' body urges MK Stalin to intervene in incident where Kashmiri students at medical college were forced to shave beards. (Image: Official website)

Vagisha Kaushik | March 5, 2024 | 08:31 PM IST

NEW DELHI: The Jammu and Kashmir Student Association has urged Tamil Nadu chief minister MK Stalin to intervene and address the issue of Kashmiri students being allegedly forced to shave their beards at state’s Chengalpattu Government Medical College for getting entry.

The students’ body wrote a letter to the CM asserting that this is the violation of fundamental rights. “We are writing to you with grave concern regarding a recent incident that has come to the light at the College of Nursing, Chengalpattu Government Medical College and Hospital in Chengalpattu, Tamil Nadu. It has been reported that approximately two dozen Kashmiri students are being compelled to shave their beards before they can gain entry into the college premises. This action not only violates the fundamental rights of these students but also raises serious questions about the inclusivity and respect for diversity in our society,” J-K Students Association said.

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The students’ association argued that the right to personal appearance including the choice to grow a beard is a fundamental aspect of a person’s identity and no student should go through such discrimination and be forced to compromise their beliefs in order to seek education.

The students’ body urged the CM to ensure that appropriate action is taken against the perpetrators and to assure affected Kashmiri students that they can study without fear of discrimination or harassment.

Highlighting the importance of CM’s intervention, J-K Students’ Association iterated, “It is essential that students from all backgrounds feel welcome and valued in our educational institutions, and that their rights and freedoms are safeguarded at all times. We urge you to prioritize the protection of fundamental rights and take swift and decisive action to address this matter. Your intervention is crucial in upholding the principles of justice, equality, and inclusivity in our society.”

The students found the incident ‘shocking’ in a state that takes pride in its rich cultural heritage and further encouraged the Tamil Nadu government to promote an environment of inclusivity and tolerance.

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