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Taliban Bans Co-Education in Universities

Taliban Bans Co-Education in Universities

Days after promising to respect women’s rights in Afghanistan, Taliban officials banned boys and girls from studying together in government and private universities in restive Herat province, calling it the root of all evil in society. The decision was taken after a meeting between university professors, owners of private institutions and Taliban officials, Khama Press news agency reported on Saturday. This is the Taliban’s first ‘fatwa’ since its sudden capture of power in Afghanistan last week.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a longtime Taliban spokesman, appeared in public for the first time on Tuesday and promised that the Taliban would respect women’s rights under Islamic law. In a three-hour meeting with university professors and owners of private educational institutions, Taliban representative and Afghanistan’s head of higher education, Mullah Farid, said there was no alternative and that boys and girls should end their studies. He also said that women teachers would be allowed to teach only female students and not male students. Farid described co-education as the ‘root of all evil in the society’.

Academics said the decision will not affect government universities, but private institutions will have to struggle, which are already grappling with the shortage of female students. According to official estimates, Herat has 40,000 students and 2,000 lecturers in private and government universities and colleges.

Indians on their way to Kabul airport were later released

Confusion and anxiety prevailed in India after a group of Indians were intercepted and taken to an undisclosed location near the Kabul airport on Saturday for interrogation and verification of travel documents. However, it was later revealed that these Indians have been released. People monitoring the changing situation in Kabul said that there is no report of harm to Indians in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan.

According to reports in the Afghan media, these Indians were among 150 people who were on their way to the Kabul airport when they were stopped by Taliban fighters. The Kabul Now news portal had earlier reported that the group had been “kidnapped” by Taliban fighters, but later updated the news, saying all people had been released and were on their way to Kabul airport. Huh. People keeping an eye on the changing situation in Kabul said that Indians were taken for questioning and this is not unusual in the current situation.

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