At another government school in Karnataka’s Udupi, male students adorned saffron scarves around their necks in a protest after Muslim girls defied the state’s new hijab diktat.
A hijab row has erupted in the state of Karnataka as girl students are forced to attend schools and colleges without a hijab despite religious mandate.
Boys of the government college in Udupi’s Kundapura came to the institution adorning saffron scarves after hijabi Muslims turned down the management’s order to attend college without headscarves, as per the state’s new guidelines.
After the girls denied to defy their religious mandate over the government’s hijab diktat, several Hindu boys came to college wearing saffron scarves, in protest.
The school management held a meeting with the parents of the Muslim students, alongside a local MLA.
In the video from the meeting that surfaced on social media, parents can be heard saying that we have never discriminated against any religion and sent our students to the college during all Hindu festivals.
“Our children have attended college during all Hindu festivals be it Onam or Holi. Everybody came to college on those days. Nobody remained absent. When it comes to Hijab it is mandatory. We have to do it,” said a parent.
“They are students why are you dragging them into this? Don’t discriminate between them. They come here to study,” said another parent.
The controversy that has been raging since early January, forced the state to call for a committee to look into the matter and take a call on pre-university college uniforms across the state.
The state had directed students, of all colleges, to shun the Hijab until the report of the high-level committee formed in this regard is submitted.
In other developments over the row, a Muslim student has filed a writ petition in the Karnataka High Court seeking a declaration that wearing a hijab (headscarf) is a Fundamental Right guaranteed under Article 14 and 25 of the Constitution of India as it is an essential practice of Islam.
The student is enrolled at the government college for girls in the Udupi district of the state. The college has for the past few weeks denied entry of hijab-clad Muslim women to attend classes.