Iran bans women from over 70 university courses: Report

Published: August 20, 2012

Iran has the highest ratio of female to male undergraduates in the world. PHOTO: REUTERS

Female students in Iran have been barred from more than 70 university degree courses, popular British daily The Telegraph reported on Monday.

The new policy introduced by the Islamic Republic of Iran, resulted in 36 universities announcing that 77 Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BSc) courses would not be offered to women in the coming academic year.

Senior clerics in Iran have become concerned about the social side-effects of rising educational standards among women, including declining birth and marriage rates. Critics have termed the move as a attempt to undermine the fight for women’s rights in the country.

The move prompted exiled Iranian human rights campaigner, Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi to call upon the United Nations to investigate the matter.

Iranian women students have outperformed men over the years, where in women have outnumbered men by three to two in passing this year’s university entrance exam.

As per the new policy, women undergraduates will be excluded from courses in some of the country’s leading institutions, including English literature, English translation, hotel management, archaeology, nuclear physics, computer science, electrical engineering, industrial engineering and business management.

The Oil Industry University said that it will no longer accept female students, citing a lack of employer demand, while another prominent university, Isfahan University gave the same reason for excluding women from its mining engineering degree programme, adding that 98% of female graduates ended up jobless.

Ebadi, exiled in Britain, wrote to UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and Navi Pillay, the high commissioner for human rights, saying that the real agenda of the policy was to reduce the proportion of female students to below 50% – from around 65% at present.

“[It] is part of the recent policy of the Islamic Republic, which tries to return women to the private domain inside the home as it cannot tolerate their passionate presence in the public arena,” says the letter, which was also sent to Ahmad Shaheed, the UN’s special rapporteur for human rights in Iran. “The aim is that women will give up their opposition and demands for their own rights.”

The new policy has also been criticised by Iranian parliamentarians, who summoned the deputy science and higher education minister to explain.

However, the science and higher education minister Kamran Daneshjoo, dismissed the controversy, saying that 90% of degrees remain open to both male and females and that single-gender courses were needed to create “balance”.

It is noteworthy that Iran has the highest ratio of female to male undergraduates in the world, according to UNESCO. Female students have become prominent in courses like applied physics and some engineering disciplines.

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Reader Comments (79)

  • Ali
    Aug 20, 2012 - 9:33PM

    shame

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  • Junaid
    Aug 20, 2012 - 9:35PM

    This is wrong at so many levels ! No one should be barred from Education on any level on the grounds of being a female ! Nonsense !

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  • Zaid Hamid
    Aug 20, 2012 - 9:40PM

    Yahoo…! We are going back to the STONE AGE…..

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  • Javed
    Aug 20, 2012 - 9:52PM

    Iran is heading for stone age and Pakistan with a Taliban mindset, following closely.

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  • Cautious
    Aug 20, 2012 - 9:59PM

    Trying to force Iranian women back into the home as cooks maybe more difficult than the bogus holy men think.

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  • geeko
    Aug 20, 2012 - 10:09PM

    Looks like there’s a “sane” contest between Iran and Pakistan… keep working hard guys, you’ll be like Saudi Arabia very soon.

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  • Fazal ur Rehman
    Aug 20, 2012 - 10:31PM

    Ratio highest in the world!- Point of pride for the Muslim world. We still have a muslim country on earth where even driving a car is a sin for women leave alone other human rights.

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  • sid
    Aug 20, 2012 - 10:55PM

    Iranian Spring is very near.strong text……………..

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  • politically incorrect
    Aug 20, 2012 - 10:57PM

    @Fazal ur Rehman

    And what is common between Iran,Pakistan and Saudi Arabia?

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  • Shahid Butt
    Aug 20, 2012 - 11:08PM

    Please limit yourself to Iran according to the news and do not drag Pakistan into every thing. @Javed:

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  • unbeliever
    Aug 20, 2012 - 11:09PM

    well, certainly eye-opening that iranians support female education so much.
    even their mullahs were not as perverts in neighbouring countries. and, to reduce the ratio, they had to bring such a legislation. wow.

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  • zee
    Aug 20, 2012 - 11:12PM

    This is what you say is a ” MUSLIM COUNTRY ”
    and this is what you call equal wrights of men and women in ” ISLAM ” ?
    congratulations to all muslims for the increment of another silly law .

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  • Arijit Sharma
    Aug 20, 2012 - 11:35PM

    Why are Muslim men so scared of women ?

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  • mr. righty rightist
    Aug 20, 2012 - 11:37PM

    This is most unfortunate.

    In the cesspool of ignorance and bigotry called THE MIDDLE EAST, there was one beacon of light, one light of hope called IRAN. Now even Iran is becoming a Saudi Arabia. Most unfortunate!

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 12:08AM

    Glory to Ummat. Golden age of Islam will be back soon, InshAllah.

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  • Nobody
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:15AM

    Seems a few Muslim majority countries have decided to start a race with one another: who can make it the stone ages first? Shameful move yet so typical of these so called “clerics.” As soon as women start to out do men anywhere in a so called Muslim society, the holy men throw out new rules in a panic. Never quite grasped the reason behind the insecurity.

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  • Indo-Australin with Pakistani Name
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:19AM

    May be Pakistan will have same rule after Taliban Khan comes to power.

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 12:26AM

    Afraid of your own mothers, sisters, daughters and wives? Paranoia of a totally different level!

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  • Raja Islam
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:29AM

    Women were meant to stay home and raise children. However, if they want to get education there is nothing wrong with that. The expectation should not be focused around getting jobs. Maybe the government should not allow woment to get subsidised university education versus no education.

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  • JB-Haider
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:35AM

    It was done in Iran and reported by the British Media?? Ironic.!

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  • k. Salim Jahangir
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:41AM

    If it is true then one finds no difference between them & Talibans.

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  • Complex
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:42AM

    I doubt this is possible in Iran. They force their women to be engineers, scientists, doctors. This looks just some propaganda.

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  • Rawi
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:43AM

    “Iran has the highest ratio of female to male undergraduates in the world. ” this says a lot. Its better than so called civilized world(USA+UK)

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  • sadaf
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:46AM

    its sad we perceive as how we are made to. i think they have done because very few women continue to serve later. likewise as a quota system should be done for women here as well especially in medical where more deserving ones are left out.

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 1:27AM

    So long Iran. our women will send you post card from moon or mars some day.

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  • farzan
    Aug 21, 2012 - 1:31AM

    I’m a girl from Iran and I’m Studying Nuclear Physics in university !!!!
    Just some people spreads this gossips in the world against Iran!Recommend

  • John B
    Aug 21, 2012 - 1:48AM

    Recipe for a revolution.

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 2:32AM

    Beautiful. Feminism has robbed men of their basic rights. And it has manifested in lower performance by males. Males suffer from testicular cancer as well as prostate cancer, but only breast cancer is sexy and gets most of the funding. Males have been ignored in almost all aspects of life.

    What a profound realization by the clerics regarding the havoc brought on men over the last 60 years. I fully support this fight against declining territory of manhood. Men, it is about time to reclaim our glory.

    For starters, start by reading The War Against Boys: How Misguided Feminism Is Harming Our Young Men by Christina Hoff Sommers.

    Hoist the flags of success men, the future is ours.

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  • Anonymous
    Aug 21, 2012 - 6:09AM

    Every human know their rights, the problem is not the human, it is the religion.Recommend

  • Not So Patriotic
    Aug 21, 2012 - 6:27AM

    I usually stand with some of Iran’s decisions, but this one is outrageous. Which Ayatollah decreed this rule? Real Islam doesn’t bar women from education.

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 7:47AM

    @Fazal ur Rehman:
    the balancing act is based on de

    mand and supply. it will creates job and social problems if remains unheeded

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  • Samar.
    Aug 21, 2012 - 8:13AM

    This is what happens when you put everything, from your faith to your entire constitution, in the hands of clerics. Once the stick gets in their hands, it will invariably be held from the wrong end!

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  • kaalchakra
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:29AM

    Whatever the issues, can be discussed internally by Muslims. There is no need to invite outside interference. Shirin Ebadi, whose Nobel prize was given for pleasing the West, is walking a fine line to treason.

    Besides, instead of jumping up and down like unbelievers, people need to take a nuanced view.

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  • craxy
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:32AM

    @Javed: Good point! I completely agree. This is so sad!

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  • Sonya
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:35AM

    @Cautious: Your real holy men are only following the Iranians blindly, Unesco figures show that women make up 58% of the total Saudi student population.

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  • Sonia
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:51AM

    It is so against the teachings of Quran!!! Every man and woman should seek knowledge!

    y don’t they bar men to keep the ‘balance’. English literature and translation are typical subjects!!!! Women can do such subjects- oil industry is still understandable but not condonable.

    Muslims should start thinking about exchange programs within the Islamic areas and offering jobs. They could exchange intelligentsia to evade brain drain. It too far-fetched but not impossible!

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  • mr. righty rightist
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:55AM

    The entire world, believes that Shia and Ahmadi muslims are progressive and Sunni muslims are regressive.

    This is a fact. Even Americans who hate Ahmadinejad know sincerely that Shia muslims are superior when it comes to intellect and progress.

    You will be surprised to know that Iran has the highest number of Jews in the middle east outside of Israel, despite openly being anti-zionist and anti-jewish. Isrealis believe that Iran could be their best ally if not for Ahmadinejad.

    So, it is disheartening to see Iran taking such steps, aping their regressive Arab counterparts like Saudi Arabia.Recommend

  • Haroon
    Aug 21, 2012 - 10:18AM

    That is an idiot decision, if women are performing well in education sector than fault at the male side. Women is not just house maid and baby birth machine.

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 10:31AM

    mulla power………..

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  • Yuri Kondratyuk
    Aug 21, 2012 - 10:32AM

    Better than the time when mullahs issued fatwas against women looking at goat tails.Recommend

  • Ali Zaid
    Aug 21, 2012 - 10:35AM

    Is there any credibility of a report published in Telegraph AGAINST Iran? I bet NO. The UK & US wants to end Islamic regime in Iran and for that, they are preparing ground; be it uranium enrichment, human rights abuses, support of Syria & Hezbollah, hatred towards Zionism and now this barring women from universities fundaa.

    Similar things happened when US wanted to invade Iraq i.e. fake reports to form a misguided public opinion. Now, as soon Saddam’s regime was gone, they accepted that all reports were fake, and there are many Hollywood movies against US occupation of Iraq and this media-war strategy showing the true face of Western rulers’ mindset.

    So, before making any judgments, one must know how Western media manipulate realities to form public opinion.

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  • Haroon
    Aug 21, 2012 - 10:45AM

    Doesnt seem such a bad idea to me in general .. i guess some details would make it easier to clearify the confusions … beleive me im not a taliban :)

    State spend huge amounts as grants to educational institutions and the intention is that students will come back and contribute to the development of the country. Now if the students are not able to contribute because of the tough nature of the job as it is in the oil & gas and mining industry then there is no point in teaching the trade to students who will not be using it.

    We are committing the same mistake in Pakistan. Most of our female engineering and medical graduates do not pursue carreers in the industry causing a huge loss to the national exchequer.

    I am not saying that a woman who wants to pursue a carreer should be barred from joining in but there has to be a balance where students who do not intend to join the mainstream should not be allowed to waste the tax money

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  • Akshay, India
    Aug 21, 2012 - 10:50AM

    So, the Iranian mullahs want women to marry early and have many kids. These Mullahs can’t be more wrong. Iranian women are fiercely independent and won’t be forced under the mullah laws. Many brave iranian women have fought against compulsory Hijab. Now its time for full equality.

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  • Hasan
    Aug 21, 2012 - 11:12AM

    Interesting that the criticism of Iran is despite this portion of The Telegraph report:

    “The new policy has also been criticised by Iranian parliamentarians, who summoned the deputy science and higher education minister to explain.

    However, the science and higher education minister, Kamran Daneshjoo, dismissed the controversy, saying that 90% of degrees remain open to both sexes and that single-gender courses were needed to create “balance”.

    Iran has highest ratio of female to male undergraduates in the world, according to UNESCO. Female students have become prominent in traditionally male-dominated courses like applied physics and some engineering disciplines.

    Sociologists have credited women’s growing academic success to the increased willingness of religiously-conservative families to send their daughters to university after the 1979 Islamic revolution.”

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  • Mujhe hay hukm e azaan
    Aug 21, 2012 - 11:15AM

    I have been working in Tehran with a multinational telecom company. Women in our company used to outperform iranian men in routine, and you will find women every where and working hard. But it frustrate men also who usually do not like to work hard.

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  • RI
    Aug 21, 2012 - 11:55AM

    please no!! don’t be like the saudis and the taliban!

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  • Trojan
    Aug 21, 2012 - 12:26PM

    @politically incorrect:
    intolerance is what’s common between them.

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  • kokokoo
    Aug 21, 2012 - 1:30PM

    Kill TTP now.

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  • DevilHunterX
    Aug 21, 2012 - 1:38PM

    @Vishnu Dutta:
    or the SUN.

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  • M.Ahmer Ali
    Aug 21, 2012 - 1:46PM

    This is extremely extremism and against the Quran and Sunnah because Last Prophet Muhammad (SAW) that
    1-Getting education is obligatory for every man and woman,
    2-If you educate a woman you educate the whole family and if you educate a man you educate only single person and
    3-Hazrat Ali (RA) said that give your generations/children the today’s education.

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  • kaalchakra
    Aug 21, 2012 - 2:23PM

    M. Ahmer Ali

    Did you read anywhere that Iranian women must stay illiterate?

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  • Michael
    Aug 21, 2012 - 3:17PM

    That’s what you get when you have theocratic nutjobs, such as what Iran has, ruling a country!!! Why am I not surprise with the continuing repression of women in Iran? There is not equality in the Iranian workforce when it comes to women. CNN reports that among Middle Eastern countries(Kuwait,Qatar,U.A.E.,Palestinian Territories,Israel,Lebanon,Saudi Arabia,Jordan,Oman,Bahrain,Iraq, and Iran), Middle East women beat men in education, but lose out in work. That’s just a shame that MIddle East women aren’t afforded equal opportunities in the Middle East as they are in the West.

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  • magus
    Aug 21, 2012 - 4:42PM

    Its horrible beacuse the shia Iran has done it. But it is right at God has decided the woman’s place as the home. Women are not supposed to work and earn money. When they do, they dont want to have children or have at most one or two. We need more children and we want them to be healthy so women need to be in the home and kitchen not in oil fields, hospitals or offices. There are enough men who can do these courses

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  • Enlightened
    Aug 21, 2012 - 5:57PM

    All Muslim countries should follow the Turkey model of governance. The rot started from Pakistan where girls schools are still being demolished as a routine and now Iran govt afraid of women power has promulgated new orders against women education. The impotence of the clergymen in both countries is coming to fore which would take both countries back to stone age.

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  • Kanwal
    Aug 21, 2012 - 7:11PM

    I think there is another side to this story. With all my years of experience with working abroad, some developed nations have this rule too. France does not want more graduate than the number of jobs avaialable at the time of their graduation. Therefore, if they for example want 500 teacher, only 500 would pass. the rest would not. this strictly applies to majority of fields. Although i would like to see education an open option for every one, i think there are situations where things get tough. For example, i hope not many people will disagree that Pakistan needs to properly regulate the number of women joining highly professional course (taking up seats from men who could qualify otherwise, on merit) and then go on and leave the studies sometime later to get married and so waste a seat plus a lot of money of government of Pakistan. One such field is medicine where there is certainly need to regulate further the induction of female graduates. It should be made more competitive and should include somehow the fact that if someone goes on to waste this much time and effort, there is at least some kind of penalty or bond. Now bring in the red arrows but i know a huge number of girls take up medicine just to get good marriage prospects. So although i dont know the solution, i really dont think regulating the number of graduates based on statistics is a bad idea. Thats eaxctly what UK did in last 10 years when university fees went to the skies and thousands of the most poor students lost their graduation options but the state/country’s furutre did not need them. I think Pakistan should do this too. You come and take a seat in a course. it must show you commit to work hard and make it fruitful. Iran is a Rising Star in the ISI Web of Knowledge lists over and over again. May be they do better planning than many of the Islamic countries or others in general?

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  • G. Din
    Aug 21, 2012 - 8:15PM

    @Kanwal:
    ” Therefore, if they for example want 500 teacher, only 500 would pass. the rest would not. this strictly applies to majority of fields.”
    What is the difference between letting 600 pass and then taking the first 500 since it would have already been let known (before even the tests were held) that there were only 500 vacancies? Do you see the irrationality of your comment? How would you answer those who sat for the test and want to know if they passed it? Are you sure you were where you say you were?

    ” Pakistan needs to properly regulate the number of women joining highly professional course (taking up seats from men who could qualify otherwise, on merit) and then go on and leave the studies sometime later to get married and so waste a seat plus a lot of money of government of Pakistan.”
    Well, this can be remedied in one of two ways: get an undertaking from the women candidates that they foreswear marriage in case they are allowed to sit for the test, pass that test successfully, proceed to the medical school for training and become eligible doctors, or, ban marriage of all women candidates who go on to become successful doctors and arrest them and throw them in the slammer if they defy that ban. Why shouldn’t that apply to men also? Oh, I see. It is because women in Islam are first and foremost duty-bound to become baby-making robots.
    “You come and take a seat in a course. it must show you commit to work hard and make it fruitful.”
    What happens if due to any number of reasons you cannot “work hard and make it fruitful”? Force the candidate to commit suicide? What will Pakistan gain if candidates commit suicide.
    Sir, you do not know what you are going to eat at your next day’s dinner and you want undertakings from others how they will conduct themselves thenceforward in life? Who are you to demand that, anyway? Oh yes, you are the MUSLIM MALE, Ashraf-ul-Makhlooqat!

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  • Aug 21, 2012 - 8:32PM

    The situation is same in Pakistan. Since the abolition of gender quota over 50 % females are graduating and after marriage deciding to stay at home resulting in shortage of trained / qualified manpower. I think this must have been the reason for this policy in Iran which was not mentioned in the story.

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  • FJ
    Aug 21, 2012 - 8:41PM

    I am not getting over this fact that ‘Iran has the highest ratio of female to male undergraduates in the world.’ WELL DONE IRAN.

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  • Ali Zaid
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:06PM

    I sought clarity of this particular news from an Iranian friend, and here’s a context of what he replied to me:

    “” I have no idea whether this news is true or not.
    U will notice that no Iranian sources are quoted in the said article, normally they at least try to hide their schemes by quoting some unknown news website of iranian origins, but this time they couldn’t one.
    The point is this. By the West’s own standards, an elected parliament can constitute any law they want (legalize homosexuality, wage war without UN approval, pass a 400 million dollar overt, not covert, budget to destroy another country’s government, pass illegal sanctions against another country without UN approval, ban the hijab, ban multiple marriages, ban anyone from researching about the holocaust lie, allow people to make profane pictures/cartoons/music/films about God and his prophets, use the idea of freedom of expression to legitimize the worst types of pornography in the world etc. etc. etc.). SO here’s the deal for them: Iran has the highest voter turnout in the whole world with women being a huge chunk of these voters. Therefore, as far as i am concerned they can legislate whatever they want, and any noise from these western powers, and their pet animals living in other countries, is mere self contradiction and the whimpers of a dying and rotten civilization frustrated by its unsuccessful campaign against the Islamic republic.”"

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  • Kanwal
    Aug 21, 2012 - 9:12PM

    @G.Din
    I was where i said i was. When i said its impossible to get into for example teaching, it meant they will take top 500, induct them into teaching degrees and the rest will have to find something else to do. Take it or leave it. Its as competitive here. And thats how you become better.

    And I have worked long enough in higher education to know our women have a problem (mind you, i am a woman myself and am self-made, have a family and now having kids alongwith a not-too-bad career starting from scartch in Pakistan; so i know what it takes more than a number of people who do bla bla bla only). we have a huge emotional luggage to carry when we commit ourselves to become high-level professionals. specially if we come from middle class. Therfore, it should be clear that we know our limitations and stregnths BEFORE we commit to excellence anywhere. Pls note that chaniging a profession and abondoning a profession mean differently. You like it or not, i have seen too many times that the women from our side of the world (lets say India and Pakistan) take up positions / offers and then go on to either drop out or have substandard performances. which definitely is not the best recommendation you see. So although i do not know how strong the regulations could be, or what kind of regulations even, i am sure there is a serious problem of commitment. Our women have an inherent issue of being divided between work and wedding/family which watses far too many seats to be borne by the tax payers.

    and finally your point about commitment; the last time i checked, there are bonds that exist in the higher education sector of Pakistan. May be you dont know but you have to pay back a whopping ~50k£ plus amount according to the bonds the doctorate students fill for getting some nice HEC, Pakistan scholorships.This is done to make the money is not wasted. And i think its very effective too. you are paid for by someone else to become something? Fine, but pls stay committed. Afterall, you still work hard for getting the next day’s dinner even if you dont get to eat it?
    And i dont think men are considered superior in any possible way in Islam, despite being a muslim myself.

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  • Mubeen Ahmad
    Aug 21, 2012 - 11:52PM
  • Aug 22, 2012 - 2:13AM

    Way to succeed in 21st Century! Bravo. Just ban education except religious education.

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  • abidi
    Aug 22, 2012 - 4:20AM

    same happening in pakistan…. girls capture limited seats in engineering and medical science in university and after masters …. they get married without processioning in field …. like in engineering university girls capture 60 out of 100 …. and in field only 20 go for jobs and 40 get married and stay at home…. same i did the mistake …. and in iran govt pay to finance an engineer or a doctor…. not like pakistan…. that we have to pay 100,000 for a seat in medical university….. so there must be some law … that if women want to study and get degree in specific subjects where men can do job…. they have to work as long they pay all expanses which govt paid them for making a doctor of engineer ..

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  • Nobody
    Aug 22, 2012 - 10:56AM

    @Raja Islam:
    How do you ever expect progress if you keep half the nation’s population at home? In ANY nation? Doesn’t make sense. Women were not created for the sole purpose of bearing endless strings of babies and staying at home raising them.

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  • Turbo Lover
    Aug 22, 2012 - 10:57AM

    So simply by banning a large quantity of female students, they have eventually ended up chopping off their own foot? Well done! Inshallah we will go back to the golden age of Islam! Just kidding.

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  • Junaid.Tahir
    Aug 22, 2012 - 12:54PM

    this news links back to a UK based news paper (and not to Iran) so there is a doubt on the authenticity of it. Also, look the picture they have selected… the girls are sitting on ground and boys on bench. This method of psychology is used to portray that women are not honoured in muslim countries.. Even you observe in general, whenever they select the muslim scholar’s pictures it will be the one where scholar is showing agression or anger. whereas for other religions the scholars pictures are shown to be the most modest ones. The point is that everyone should be treated fairly and without any propaganda.

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  • agnostic
    Aug 22, 2012 - 5:11PM

    @M.Ahmer Ali:
    “This is extremely extremism and against the Quran and Sunnah because Last Prophet Muhammad (SAW) that
    1-Getting education is obligatory for every man and woman,”

    If what you say is true then why are the taliban blowing-up girls schools. The mullas seem to be in full agreement with taliban on this and they don’t say it is unislamic to prevent girls from studying.

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  • sashayub
    Aug 22, 2012 - 5:12PM

    pakistan has some good institutions, some even all-girls institutions….i would encourage them to apply and study in Pakistan

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  • Prasad Babu
    Aug 22, 2012 - 5:13PM

    Read the fine prints, guys!

    Iran is not saying don’t educate girls. What Iran is saying is that girls can get educated in subjects that may not lead to employment (not that I agree).

    Why doesn’t Iran ban women in workplace outright?

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  • alicia
    Aug 22, 2012 - 5:26PM

    If women get enough marks to get in and men don’t then it means that those women are intelligent and better than those men and deserve those positions. Instead of banning women the government should support them in working.

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  • Aug 22, 2012 - 5:33PM

    @Raja Islam: ” Women were meant to stay home and raise children. “

    with such belief that women are for raising children and stay at home restrictions on women education is bound to come but i am sure that where there are more girls undergraduate than their male counterpart such restrictions is bound to come to end in Iran sooner.

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  • Tahir
    Aug 22, 2012 - 5:38PM

    @Nikhil Banerjee: Bravoooo. We want to end slavery of women. Men should be freed.

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  • Manoj Joshi
    Aug 22, 2012 - 8:58PM

    The decision of Iran to ban women from over 70 university courses is a bit too perplexing. The reasons are not very clear and perhaps the Government of Iran does not want to be very transparent about it. There are conjectures that Iran is moving on the lines of Saudi Arabia; where women are not allowed to drive cars; and should such a situation arise that would be most unfortunate especially for the women of Iran. The work of Shirin Ebadi the Noble laureate from Iran who is at present facing exile becomes all the more challenging. The Oil Industry University too banning employment for women is indeed going to affect the ratio of employment in that Islamic Republic as oil and petroleum are the main product of export from Iran. This is a situation most unacceptable and anti-women nevertheless happens to be an internal matter of The Islamic Republic of Iran. Hence, direct involvement by any third person other than a citizen of that country may not be appropriate.

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  • fatima
    Aug 23, 2012 - 11:07AM

    @kaalchakra:
    It is because of this mindset that ensures that our problems never get solved… people like you are always more upset by western critique than by the actual problem!! And what is this nuanced approach that we should take as opposed to non believers? Some things are wrong. End of story.

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  • NM
    Aug 23, 2012 - 2:22PM

    The Irani govt certainly has lost it..

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  • S. K . Barlaas
    Sep 19, 2012 - 9:45PM

    All Dear Readers!

    Of course this is one of the worst example of gender inequality but I wonder what religious clerics have to say in this regards; clerics in Pakistan and other Muslim countries. When French university bans Hijab there is great hue and cry over it and each and every one condemns the act while Jamait-E-Islami goes out to bring in ‘World Hijab Day.’ Okay I praise them that they care so much about the religious teachings and want to promote individual likes and dislikes, which is no doubt what liberalism is about. But what is JI going to do about an act of discrimination carried out by Iran, a very religious country indeed? If this jamat is actually a neutral one, I would expect it to introduce a ‘World Gender Equality Day’ and condemn Iran for this deplorable act of gender discrimination. IN fact I would recommend the Jamat to combine the World Hijab Day with Gender Equality day and make ‘World Gender Equality and Hijab day!.

    Friends I ask for the free practice of one’s likes and dislikes, be it wearing a Hijab or pursuing a degree in English or driving a car in S.Arabia! Iran should not have done this act; I wonder how are the religious clerics going to defend this!

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  • Sep 20, 2012 - 1:06PM

    All Dear Readers!

    Of course this is one of the worst example of gender inequality but I wonder what religious clerics have to say in this regards; clerics in Pakistan and other Muslim countries. When French university bans Hijab there is great hue and cry over it and each and every one condemns the act while Jamait-E-Islami goes out to bring in ‘World Hijab Day.’ Okay I praise them that they care so much about the religious teachings and want to promote individual likes and dislikes, which is no doubt what liberalism is about. But what is JI going to do about an act of discrimination carried out by Iran, a very religious country indeed? If this jamat is actually a neutral one, I would expect it to introduce a ‘World Gender Equality Day’ and condemn Iran for this deplorable act of gender discrimination. IN fact I would recommend the Jamat to combine the World Hijab Day with Gender Equality day and make ‘World Gender Equality and Hijab day!.Recommend

  • DBennett
    Sep 22, 2012 - 7:13AM

    Let’s put together Online College Classes specifically the Banned Classes through Major US College and Universities. All Irainian women interested in this program , let me know! Maybe you can get a Harvard Degree?

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  • Oct 5, 2012 - 4:57PM

    We have heard the facts behind the ban. Now tell us the truth…

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