Translation by Iran Press Watch
According to “BahaiNews”, Maghsoud Anvari, a Baha’i citizen, has been expelled from Shahid Bahonar University2.
According to this Baha’i citizen’s account, he was expelled during the final exams of his second term; the reason for his dismissal was stated as his belief in the Baha’i Faith.
This Baha’i citizen, during his discussion with “BahaiNews”, indicated that “Although I was accepted at the 8700 level in the field of information technology at the Shaheed Bahonar University in Kerman, I was ousted from the university after attending for one term.”
This Baha’i student, a resident of Zahedan, after taking the National Entrance Exam3, was able to attend the university. He describes his acceptance to the university: “the first step was through online registration, for which only specified documents are required ‒ and I so I was able to register. Under the religion column, as there was no description, I selected ‘other.’ After the online registration, it was required that I submit the online registration forms to the University’s Educational Affairs at a certain date and time to complete the registration.”
This Baha’i citizen mentions: “I started my studies at the university in early September; around the end of October it was time for me to submit the forms and complete my registration, which I did.”
The “BahaiNews” reporter asked; “what type of problems did you have to face? This expelled student continued: “They gave me three new forms, which I filled out. Two of the forms had a ‘religion column’, in which I wrote ‘Baha’i’, and drew a line after this in order to prevent anyone from writing anything else. In reality, in three sections of these forms I made clear that my religion is not Islam, and that I am a Baha’i.”
Maghsoud Anvari stated: “The first term at the university was very ordinary, but one of my friends from Tehran who was in the Electrical Engineering Department at the same university, while submitting his forms, was told:” Your name has been removed from the student list online, and you have been barred from the university.”
The Baha’i News reporter asked:” when did you realize that you had been expelled from the university? Maghsoud Anvari replied: “I was effectively registered; two days before my first final exam, around noon, I browsed the university’s website to confirm the dates and also check to see if I would need my student ID for the exam. Before entering the exam portion of the site, in the main student information page, something caught my attention. I saw the seventeen units and six courses that I had had been eliminated. Each course was marked as ‘educationally eliminated’, and the transcript on top was marked as ‘normal provisional status’.”
The expelled student told the Baha’i News reporter: “It was a bit peculiar to me, so I went to the educational affairs unit. I saw a friend of mine and asked him to show me his university profile page ‒ possibly this was an issue for everyone. When I saw his page, it became apparent that this was only a problem for me.”
The expelled student described the method by which he was informed of the university’s actions “Since they did not want to inform me of my ‘provisional status’, after consulting with my family I decided to follow up on this problem after my final exam. And it happened this way: I took five out of six exams, but my name was marked as ‘educationally eliminated’ on three rosters, and it was not listed on the other two. During the first three exams, I was allowed to take the exam, but I was not permitted to sign the attendance sheet. I did not pursue the ‘education elimination’ issue, and kept taking my exams, as I was not at fault. When I took the sixth exam, my parents went to the educational affairs office to track the issue. At the final exam, the issue was not about the exam itself anymore. They wanted me to agree to accept the repercussions after the exam. I asked what are the consequences of the exam? They explained that it meant that it was my responsibility if my exam was not graded, and I receive an ‘F’.” In response to the university authority’s statement he emphasized that he would not agree to this request. The authority then explained that he needed to inform the higher authorities that this student was insisting that he would not agree with the terms.
According to this student, his professor encouraged him to sign the agreement in order for him to review and grade his exam. This expelled student repeatedly stated that he wldo not agree to those terms; at the end of the exam, the authorities would not accept his exam.
Maghsoud Anvari, in his visit to one of authorities’ offices, realized that this person was the university security authority ‒ he told him: “Your exam will not be accepted until you sign the consent. You need to leave the room ‒ perhaps you will be able to take the exam in the next term, God willing.”
According to this student, the official did not become involved in any discussion with him. At the same time, his parents told him that the Central University had told them that he had been banned from higher education.
According to this student: “The fascinating point that I have realized is that the exam is not even a priority ‒ they only want to have the consent signed.”
This student also told us that another friend of his pursued this issue up to the office of the Supreme Leader (Ayatollah Khamenei), as well as the university Chancellor for a month, to no avail.
The university officials announced that nothing could be done at the university, and that the only thing he can do is to contact the Educational Testing Organization.
1. “BahaiNews” is an independent non-Bahá’í initiative and is not affiliated with any Baha’i institutions.
2. Shahid Bahonar University is described here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shahid_Bahonar_University_of_Kerman
3. The Iranian University Entrance Exam is described here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iranian_University_Entrance_Exam