Iran continues to deny Bahá'í entrance to universities

Since the Islamic Revolution, Baha'is have been typically been denied entry to Iran's top colleges due to their faith and expression of religion.

Members of the Baha'i faith hold flowers as they demonstrate outside a state security court during a hearing in the case of a fellow Baha'i man charged with seeking to establish a base for the community in Yemen, in the country's capital Sanaa April 3, 2016 (photo credit: REUTERS/KHALED ABDULLAH)
Members of the Baha'i faith hold flowers as they demonstrate outside a state security court during a hearing in the case of a fellow Baha'i man charged with seeking to establish a base for the community in Yemen, in the country's capital Sanaa April 3, 2016
(photo credit: REUTERS/KHALED ABDULLAH)
The Iran Human Rights Organization (IHRO) has released a list of fifteen Baha'i citizens of Iran who were denied entrance and acceptance into Iranian universities, according to Radio Farda.
Since the Islamic Revolution, Baha'is have been typically been denied entry to Iran's top colleges, openly because of their faith and expression of religion.
In 1979, many Baha'i students and lecturers were ousted from the universities they had attended or taught at. More than 40 years later, those who attempt to apply for school today are normally told that their application is "deficient," and are denied entry.
"In 2006, I competed in the national entrance exam. When I demanded to see the result, the authorities told me that my file was 'defective.' I went to the Assessment Organization to follow up," Baha'i student hopeful Iqan Shahidi said. "There, they said that I was not allowed to enter the university because I was a member of the Baha'i minority group."
Since then, Shahidi has been working with activists and "influential groups" to curb this policy within Iran.
"I even wrote to the members of Majlis (Iranian Parliament),” Shahidi added. "I also met our city's Friday Prayer Imam. I rarely received a response, and if I did, it was limited to confirming my deprivation for being a Baha'i."
He was arrested in 2010 for being a member of an illegal group, and for spreading propaganda against the Iran Regime. At a preliminary hearing, Shahidi was given 5 years in prison, and an appellant court upheld the verdict.
According to the report, the exclusion of Baha'is from Iranian universities ties back to a directive passed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenaei in 1991. It not only targets Baha'is wanting to attend university, but also aims to prevent individuals from establishing their religion as Baha'i, and has more or less excluded them from Iranian culture.


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