Karnataka High Court upholds hijab ban

  • Uniforms compulsory for students in schools and colleges !
  • Wearing hijab is not an essential practice in Islam !
  • All petitions challenging hijab ban quashed !

Bengaluru (Karnataka) – The case of a ban on wearing hijab (fabric used by Muslim women to cover head and neck) in educational institutions, which has been pending for weeks, has finally come to an end. The Karnataka High Court has ruled that the hijab will remain banned in schools and colleges. The Court also dismissed all petitions challenging the hijab ban, stating that wearing a hijab is not an essential practice in Islam. The Court also ruled that uniforms are mandatory for students in schools and colleges. Under this, schools and colleges have also been given the right to design uniforms. Prior to this judgement, all gatherings, agitations, demonstrations, or celebrations in public places were banned in Bengaluru till 21st March 2022. Section 144 (curfew) has been imposed in many Districts of the State.

Judgment based on Article 25 of Constitution and compulsion of school uniform

A total of eight petitions challenging the hijab ban were filed in the Court. All of them have been dismissed. High Court Chief Justice Rituraj Awasthi, while delivering the judgment, said that the decision was based on two factors. First, does wearing a hijab fall under the ambit of religious freedom under Article 25 of the Constitution ? Secondly, is making school uniforms compulsory against this freedom ? After studying both factors, the Court upheld the rule of the hijab ban in educational institutions.

Attempt to create unrest ! – Karnataka High Court

The Court ruled that the manner in which the case came to be, suggests that some people are trying to create unrest and disharmony in the society.

Abide by the Court order and maintain harmony ! – Chief Minister Bommai

Commenting on the Court’s order, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said, ‘We respect the verdict of the High Court.

Education is a must for students. Everybody should obey the Court order and maintain harmony’.

Karnataka High Court considered the following questions !

1. Is wearing a hijab compulsory in Islam under Article 25 ?

2. Is the compulsion of school uniforms a violation of rights ?

3. Is the verdict dated 5th February 2022 violating sections 14 and 15 or not ?

4. Has there been any case of disciplinary enquiry against the college officials ?

Judge Rituraj Awasthi himself answered the above questions !

1. Wearing of hijab by Muslim women is not an essential religious practise in Islam.

2. The compulsion of school uniforms is only a reasonable obligation and is constitutionally acceptable, which students cannot object to.

3. Therefore, the Government has the power to enforce the verdict dated 5th February 2022, and it is not illegal.

4. The Court said that no case has been proven in order to take disciplinary action against the defendants.

Will challenge the verdict in Supreme Court !

Anas Tanveer, an advocate representing Muslim girl students in the case, said he would challenge the Karnataka High Court’s verdict in the Supreme Court.

‘These girls will continue their education by exercising the right to wear hijab. These girls have not given up hope from the Court and the Constitution’, said advocate Tanveer.

I disagree with the verdict of the Karnataka High Court ! – Asaduddin Owaisi

Responding to the Karnataka High Court’s order, MIM president and MP Asaduddin Owaisi said, ‘I disagree with this verdict. It is my right to disagree with this verdict.

This verdict is against religious freedom in the Constitution. I hope the petitioners will challenge it in the Supreme Court’.

Court’s decision is disappointing ! – Mehbooba Mufti

Mehbooba Mufti, chief of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Kashmir and former CM, said in a tweet, Karnataka HC’s decision to uphold the Hijab ban is deeply disappointing.

On one hand, we talk about empowering women, yet we are denying them the right to a simple choice. It isn’t just about religion but the freedom to choose (sic)’.

The Court did not uphold a fundamental right ! – Omar Abdullah

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said he was very disappointed by the Karnataka High Court’s verdict. He said, ‘Regardless of what you may think about the hijab it’s not about an item of clothing, it’s about the right of a woman to choose how she wants to dress.

That the court didn’t uphold this basic right is a travesty’.

Students in Chennai protest against HC verdict

Protests erupted at The New College in Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu, against the Karnataka High Court’s decision.

Some students came out of the college and protested.

Muslim students in Surpura, Karnataka boycotted lectures and left college after Court’s judgement !

After the Karnataka High Court’s decision on Hijab, Muslim students of PU College in Surpura taluka of Karnataka boycotted the class. The examination was to be held here from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The students boycotted it. They said, ‘We will discuss with the parents and then decide whether to come to college. We will take the exam only by wearing a hijab. If we are forced to remove the hijab, we will not take the exam’.

(Reference :  TIMES NOW)

College Dr Shakuntala said that the girl students were asked to follow the orders of the Karnataka High Court. They refused to comply and left the class. A total of 35 girls boycotted the class.

Karnataka Hijab Controversy :

The Karnataka Government had ordered to make uniforms compulsory by amending the law on uniforms in educational institutions. It banned the wearing of religious attire. After its enforcement, a dispute started over the hijab in the Government junior college at Kundapur in Udupi District of Karnataka. Muslim students entering the college wearing hijab were denied entry in the college. Six Muslim students filed a petition in the High Court against this. Meanwhile, despite strict orders from the college authorities citing the uniform rules issued by the Karnataka State Government which stated, ‘wearing hijab will not be allowed’, some Muslim students came to the college with their parents. They were then made to stand outside the college premises. As a result, the girls and their parents staged a protest outside the entrance. At the same time, some Hindu students were walking around the college premises wearing saffron robes to protest against these girls. After that, the matter further worsened.