The Karnataka Education Department on Saturday took cognisance over the hijab row, asking students to follow the dress code decided by the authorities.
The Department said students studying in the government schools should comply with the dress code requirements mandates by the state government while those in private institutions should follow the uniform dress code as asked of them by the school management.
Colleges that are under the dept of Pre-University, state govt to follow the dress which was decided by the college’s development board (CDC). If there is no such dress code, students can wear the dress which will not affect equality, integrity and law & order: Karnataka Edu Dept— ANI (@ANI) February 5, 2022
Furthermore, students enrolled in colleges that are under the dept of Pre-University, state govt, are mandated to abide by dress code decided by the college’s development board (CDC). “If there is no such dress code, students can wear the dress which will not affect equality, integrity and law & order,” the Karnataka Education Department said.
Earlier, the Karnataka government invoked 133(2) of the Karnataka Education Act-1983 that states that religious attires are not allowed inside the campus and that a uniform style of clothing is mandatory.
Karnataka hijab row: Institutes deny entry to burqa-clad students
The controversy first erupted in January 2022 after several Muslim students were denied entry to classes in a Udupi college because they were wearing hijab. Social media platforms were rife with videos of college authorities refusing to allow burqa-clad students inside their institutions. The college authorities had then argued that the hijab was not a part of the uniform dress code suggested to the students. Management under the new state guidelines had asked girl students to skip wearing hijab while in college. Eight girl students have constantly refused to follow the guideline as they claimed it prevented them from practising their faith. Subsequently, several other colleges also started denying entry to students who did not conform to their respective dress codes.
Meanwhile, a petition arguing that Muslim women wearing Hijab should be permitted to attend classes was accepted by the Karnataka High Court. The petition was filed by a Muslim student, asking the High Court for a direction to allow wearing a hijab in college, stating that it is her “Fundamental Right” granted under Article 14 and 25 of the Indian Constitution and “integral practise of Islam”.
As the hijab row continues to rage on, Hindu students, too, have jumped into the controversy, registering their protests against the Muslims wearing hijab by donning saffron scarves. In a Government Junior College in Kunadapur, around 100 Hindu students came to the college with saffron scarves around their necks to protest against Muslim girls continuing to wear Hijab to the college. On Saturday, in solidarity with their classmates, girl students also hit the streets by wearing saffron shawls to protest against the attempts of Muslim students to vitiate the secular atmosphere in the college by deliberately violating the rules and regulations.