Education

Student Expelled from University Hostel in Varanasi, Allegedly Over Rumours of Lesbianism

“The tendencies she was showing were at a nascent stage. We cannot really pin-point if it is really homosexuality.”

Mahila Maha Vidhyalaya in Varanasi. Courtesy: Mahila Maha Vidhyalaya website

Mahila Maha Vidhyalaya in Varanasi. Courtesy: Mahila Maha Vidhyalaya website

New Delhi: A student at the Mahila Maha Vidhyalaya in Varanasi, affiliated with the Benaras Hindu University, has allegedly been expelled from the university’s Swati Kunj hostel over rumours that she is a lesbian.

According to an Indian Express report, while the official college line says that she has been expelled from the hostel because she was harassing other students and forcing them to help her with college work, a professor on the disciplinary committee said said the first-year student was “showing tendencies of being homosexual”, which is what led to the expulsion.

“The tendencies she was showing were at a nascent stage. We cannot really pin-point if it is really homosexuality. But we had to suspend her to maintain peace and discipline in the hostel,” the professor told the newspaper.

Neelam Atri, assistant professor and chief coordinator of the five hostels in the college, who took disciplinary action against the student, told Indian Express, “Around 16 boarders had given me in writing that the student was harassing them and scaring them with her activities and indiscipline. The student was also threatening fellow boarders with suicide if they did not yield to her demands.” She denied there being any rumours of lesbianism.

Speaking to Scroll.in, the student in question has said that her warden called her a lesbian and that other students are now constantly making fun of her because of the rumours. She insisted that she is not a lesbian; it should not matter either way and it is unfortunate that the college has made her feel like she is defending herself against a wrongdoing in this case and increased the stigmatisation.

According to the student, she does often ask others for help because her English is weak. However, she has denied threatening to commit suicide if they could not give her time.“I said that just once when the warden scolded me for two hours on August 30,” she told Scroll.in.

Last week, the student’s parents were called to the college and asked to have her “disease” treated, Indian Express reported. “The student used to threaten to harm herself if her fellow boarders did not help her out with her homework or other such things… She is not well. She has been depressed and had tried to harm herself. So, we asked her family to show her to a good doctor… We told them that if she recuperates, she can return to the hostel,” Atri told the newspaper.