A day after the Taliban extended its support to the Muslim women wearing hijab in the colleges in Karnataka, over a thousand of feminists, collective groups, lawyers and individuals have come together and condemned the exclusion of hijab-wearing students from colleges in Karnataka. In a letter, which has been signed by more than 1850 people, the feminists have claimed that the hijab is only the latest pretext to impose apartheid on and attack Muslim women.
Supporting the burqa-clad women, the letter stated that uniforms are not meant to impose cultural uniformity on a plural country and that Muslim women should be allowed to wear hijabs in the classrooms. “Uniforms in institutions are intended to minimize differences between students of different economic classes, not to impose cultural uniformity”, it read.
The feminist organisations also attacked Hindu groups saying they have created enmity between the Hindus and Muslims. “Islamophobia hate crimes have joined at the hip to patriarchal hate crimes against Muslim and Hindu women by Hindu supremacist perpetrators”, it added.
Press Release: Statement issued by close to 2000 individuals, incl. hundreds of feminists & 130 + organizations, from across India, condemning the targeting & exclusion of hijab wearing muslim women students in #Karnataka. Share widely. #EducationMyRight #KarnatakaAgainstHate pic.twitter.com/PjNx5NDUE3— Meera Sanghamitra (@meeracomposes) February 10, 2022
The letter has reportedly been signed by over 130 groups across 15 states including Awaaz-e-Nizwan, Feminists in Resistance, People’s Union for Civil Liberties, Saheli Women’s Resource Centre and more. The letter has also been signed by individuals who include Kavita Krishnan, Hasina Khan, Aruna Roy, Safoora Zargar, Khalida Parveen and others.
The Taliban today praised the Muslim hijab-wearing girls in Karnataka for standing up for the Islamic values amid the hijab row. “The struggle of Indian Muslim girls for hijab shows that hijab is not an Arab, Iranian, Egyptian or Pakistani culture, but an Islamic value for which Muslim girls around the world sacrifice in various ways and defend their religious value”, tweeted Inamullah Samangani, the Deputy Spokesman of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
It is pertinent to note that the Taliban has a history of torturing women and assaulting them for not following Islamic regulations, including the full veil dress code. Last year, the Taliban in Afghanistan had ruled its first indication after coming to power that they would make hijab compulsory for women in Afghanistan if not burqa. Suppressing the rights of women, it had also ordered the televisions to stop airing shows featuring women artists and had reiterated that women scribes must cover up themselves.
Hundreds of women had then come out on the streets of Kabul demanding equal rights for men and women. The Taliban had reportedly arrested a few for raising their voices against the authorities. they were beaten and assaulted. Interestingly, the claimed feminists had then bashed the Taliban government for their atrocities on Afgan women. “Elimination of women = elimination of human beings”, Kavita Krishnan had said who today is supporting the concept of hijab.
Did you stand in solidarity with Afghan people against US occupation? Good.— Kavita Krishnan (@kavita_krishnan) September 21, 2021
Now you need to stand with Afghan women telling the Talibani “Virtue and Vice Ministry” – “you took my holy soil don’t take my education! Elimination of women = elimination of human beings.” https://t.co/cojNJirzCg
Feminists like Kavita Krishnan, Aruna Roy, Safoora Zarga who have today signed in the letter to extend support to Karnataka hijab girls are better known for their anti-national elements and history of backing radical Islamists, fake news peddlers, and pro-Pakistan propagandas.
Kavita Krishnan had earlier compared Hindutva to Taliban, while Aruna Roy had blatantly attacked the Hindu ideology. She had opined that there was growing intolerance against free speech in India and that the Indian youth considered Gandhi as the traitor and Godse as the hero. Safoora Zargar was one of the key conspirators in the northeast Delhi riots conspiracy case and was charged under the stringent anti-terror law.
The hijab controversy in Karnataka gained momentum since the first week of January after eight Muslim girls were denied entry to classes in a Udupi college because they were wearing hijab. The college authorities had informed that the hijab was not a part of the uniform dress code suggested to the students. The Muslim women, adamant on wearing hijab, then filed a petition in High Court seeking permission to attend classes with hijab. They stated that wearing hijab was their ‘fundamental right’ granted under Article 14 and 25 of the Indian Constitution and ‘integral practice of Islam’.
The Court has however today passed the order to avoid wearing religious garments to the institution till the matter is pending before the Court.