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| Last Updated:17/02/2014

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Menstruating teachers and students banned from schools

PRAKASH SINGH, The Himalayan Times, 06 February, 2014


BAJURA: As ghastly as it sounds, some schools in the remote areas of Bajura have banned girls and female teachers from entering schools when they are menstruating.


As a result of the ban, female students and teachers are compelled to miss school for at least five to seven days every month.


According to locals, girls at Jukot-based Shambhu Shunanda Secondary School have been banned from attending school during menses because there is a temple on the school premises.


Sushila Shahi, a student, said both the school and their families have strictly told them not to attend school because they fear that if menstruating girls enter school premises, it may invite the wrath of god.


Tularam Rokaya, principal of the school, said it was a long-followed trend. There are three female teachers working in the school.


Durgeshwori Shahi, a teacher, said, “We cannot do anything but silently tolerate the discrimination against us,” said Shahi.


The school building was shifted to the temple premises seven years after a landslip in the area where the school was located.


A similar custom is followed in Toli VDC of Devaldanda, where locals believe that if women are allowed to attend school during menstruation, they fall sick. “To appease gods, we make offer a he-goat,” a local said. As girls do not attend class regularly, their pass percentage is low. Women in mid and far-Western region have to spend five to seven days in Chhaupadi.