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Strict action will be taken against educational institutions if they force students to remove tilak, kumkum, bindi etc: Karnataka Education Minister BC Nagesh

Karnataka Minister BC Nagesh said that kumkum, sindhur and bindi are our cultural identities, they are used as ornaments, and they can't be compared with the hijab

Amid the hijab row, Karnataka Education minister B Nagesh has warned that strict action will be taken against those educational institutions that stop students with tilak, kumkum, bindi, sindhur etc from entering the school or colleges.

Speaking to the media, Karnataka Minister BC Nagesh said that kumkum, sindhur and bindi are our cultural identities, and they are used as ornaments. Hence it can’t be compared with the hijab, which is purely a religious outfit. The minister warned the school authorities of facing severe actions if they stop students who adorn kumkum, sindhur etc.

The minister said that the hijab represents religion, while the bangles, kumkum, bindi are just ornaments. He added that there are no strict regulations against wearing these ornaments to school, and students wear this voluntarily. He also said that the teachers should not ask the students to remove kumkum, bindi, etc.

This comes after an incident in the Vijayapur district where a student with kumkum tilak was stopped from entering the college. This incident had caused massive outrage in the state, with citizens demanding strict action against teachers.

Amidst the ongoing hijab controversy, the college authorities of the Government PUC College at Indi in Vijayapura district had stopped a male student sporting a tilak from entering the campus.

The boy was asked to remove the tilak before entering college. However, he refused and was asked to go home. The video of the incident had gone viral on social media platforms.

Following the incident, Bajrang Dal activists had protested outside the college and shouted slogans against the college and teachers.

Hindu activist Pramod Mutalik, the founder of Sri Rama Sene, said, “Sindhur is not a religious symbol. It is part of the culture of the country. This can not be banned in accordance with the Education Department circular on religious symbols”.

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