While the prime minister of the country is promising a digital India, Tamil Nadu government has banned students from using mobile phones in college campuses across the state. According to The Hindu, Directorate of Collegiate Education has issued a circular to all government, government-aided and self-financing colleges in Tamil Nadu.
Safety of girls was one of the main reasons cited by the officials. “In co-education colleges, we have received complaints that boys were taking videos and pictures of girl students. Mobile phones are also occasionally used for malpractices during examinations,” the official said. “Women students are filmed in the company of their male friends, the videos are later misused.”
College students are obviously not happy with this “absurd” decision. Speaking to NDTV, a college student said, “Most students are already adults when they enter college and the use of mobile phones cannot be dictated by authorities. The choice should be left to the students. One of the reasons cited was safety of girls but even with the ban in many colleges, girls face problems.”
Like how it’s in most colleges across India, it makes sense to ban the use of phone in classrooms, but a total ban across campus is bit too regressive for year 2018. A lot of college work is done over the internet, and it wouldn’t be fair to ban the use of phones. However, this decision will not apply to centre-run institutions like IIT Madras, etc.
Prof M Andrew Sesuraj from Loyola College said, “I personally allow my students to use Google during my class. I train them to use camera mobiles to document short films. I help them to go live with the department programmes and lectures through Facebook. Instead of teaching the students to responsibly use the modern gadgets, this order will create hurdles for creativity.”
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