Female students at the Tajik State Pedagogical University in Dushanbe are reportedly required to wear heels to school as part of their uniform.
The shoes are to be no more than 10 cm (or about 4 inches), Emma Sabzalieva writes on her blog, which focuses on higher education in Central Asia, a subject she researches. Sabzalieva, who picked up the story from Tajikistan newspaper Asia-Plus, writes:
I read through Asia-Plus' latest reportage on the situation with complete bewilderment. Could it really be that the Rector believes that ordering such a dress code (which is much more explicit than the national dress code for university students) – and having security guards at the entrance of the university checking this in what in Russian is called face control – will enhance female students' learning experience? Will it make them smarter or better equipped to learn?
Of course, the answer is no.
This is not the first time Abdujabbor Rahmonov has interfered in such affairs. As Minister of Education, he introduced a dress code into schools which included such rules as banning male teachers from having beards.
She also translates this reaction posted to the Asia-Plus Facebook page, where people expressed outrage but not surprise: "Where is Tajikistan and its government heading? Rather than starting with high heels… it would be better to strengthen teaching, stop bribe-taking and simply give students the chance to study…"