Tens of college students have been kicked out of their universities over the past months because of being followers of the Baha’i faith, several human rights groups have reported.
Student Suha Izzdi, 21, has been reportedly dismissed from the University of Zanjan, only one year before her graduation, a report by the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran has claimed.
The student was studying at the Faculty of Information Technology when she was informed in a phone call from university officials that she would not be able to complete her education and that her name has been removed from the register.
Izzdi took to Twitter to express her feelings after the decision, saying “trying to get an education in a society that does not believe in women is definitely a hard thing to do.”
“But getting an education for a follower of the Baha’i faith is not possible. After three years of hard work ... I got dismissed from college.”
This is not the case where one follower of the Baha’i faith has been dismissed from college. Five other Baha'i students have been expelled from their universities because of their religion in recent months, reports have said.
The decision to dismiss these students is unlawful as articles of the Iranian constitution do not prevent Baha'i followers from receiving an education at Iranian universities. However, the act was an enforceable decision issued by the Supreme Council for the Cultural Revolution (SCIRI) obeying the orders of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
In Iran, Baha'is cannot practice their faith in a public manner and are subjected to harassment and arrests.
The decision to ban the Baha'i faith was issued in 1981, two years after the Islamic Revolution in Iran. Thus, their independent universities were dissolved and its professors were detained for long periods.
Many have lost their jobs because of their faith, and some had their money and financial assets confiscated. Some were unlawfully killed too, according to human rights groups.