Bengaluru: Karnataka JD(S) President C M Ibrahim on Tuesday drew comparisons between ‘pallu’ (loose end of a sari, worn over one’s shoulder or head by women) and the hijab and said they are part of India’s culture and history.
He said pallu was part of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s attire and is now also worn by the President of India.
“Hijab is pallu on the head, some call it hijab and some call it pallu. In Rajasthan, Rajput women don’t show their face and they cover it with ghunghat, will a law be brought against it? will those women be declared as Muslim?” Ibrahim said in response to a question.
Speaking to reporters here, he said, “there was pallu on Indira Gandhi’s head, there is pallu on the head of the President of India. Is the ghunghat on their head a PFI conspiracy? Having a pallu on the head is the culture of India, history of India.”
“It (pallu) was on Kitturu Rani Chennamma’s head, whether you call it hijab or pallu, it is the same. Some say ‘paani’ in Hindi, while others call it water in English…but water is water. Names change according to a language, why do you give it a religious angle?” he asked.
The former Union Minister was reacting to BJP national General Secretary C T Ravi’s tweet on the picture of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi walking with a hijab clad young girl and accusing him of “glorifying hijab”.
“From patronising a controversial Christian Pastor to glorifying the Hijab, Congress co-owner Rahul Gandhi is doing everything to prove that he and his party survive on “appeasement politics”. Bharat Jodo Yatra is nothing but a COMMUNAL YATRA to save the sinking “Fake Gandhis,” Ravi tweeted.
Ibrahim’s comments came on the day, when Karnataka government told the Supreme Court that its order that kicked up a row over hijab was “religion neutral”, launching a strong defence of the state and blaming the PFI for the controversy it claimed was part of a “larger conspiracy”.
Insisting that the agitation in support of wearing hijab in educational institutions was not a “spontaneous act” by a few individuals, it said the state government would have been “guilty of dereliction of constitutional duty” if it had not acted the way it did.
The state government had, by its order of February 5, 2022, banned wearing clothes that disturb equality, integrity, and public order in schools and colleges. The order was challenged by some Muslim girls in the high court. It had also led to widespread protests across the state.