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16% of Muslim students from Mangalore University seek TC, among others, university following HC order banning hijab in classrooms one of the reasons

The Vice Chancellor of Mangalore University (MU), Prof. PS Yadapadithya announced in May that TCs (transfer certificates) would be issued to girl students who did not wish to attend classes without a hijab.

More than 16% of Muslim girl students have taken their transfer certificate (TC) in the second, third, fourth and fifth semesters of government and aided colleges affiliated with Mangalore University in Karnataka, reports Deccan Herald. This comes on the heels of the varsity’s decision to enforce the Karnataka High Court order on hijab and not allow religious attires in classrooms, which is being considered one of the major reasons for Muslims taking TC.

The Vice Chancellor of Mangalore University (MU), Prof. PS Yadapadithya announced in May that TCs (transfer certificates) would be issued to girl students who did not wish to attend classes without a hijab.

According to a Deccan Herald report, 145 Muslim girl students out of a total of 900 who had taken admission for various courses in the government, aided, and affiliated colleges of MU in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts in 2020-21 and 2021-22 had taken TC.

Some of them have enrolled in colleges where wearing a hijab is permitted. Other female students have dropped out of college for various reasons, including an inability to pay university fees.

However, according to RTI information, all 113 Muslim girl students in the Kodagu district are continuing their studies in their colleges. In the Kodagu district, MU has 10 government, aided, and affiliated colleges. 

The percentage of Muslim female students seeking TC in government colleges (34%) is higher than in aided colleges (8%). Dr P Dayanand Pai-P Satisha Pai Government First Grade College tops the government colleges in Dakshina Kannada, in which 35 out of 51 Muslim girl students have taken their TC.

There are 39 government and 36 aided colleges in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts. Nine female students have taken their TC at the Government First Grade College in Ajjarkad, the epicentre of the hijab controversy.

Twenty female students from Haleangadi Government First Grade College who attended classes in the first, third, and fourth semesters received TCs while in the second, fourth, and sixth semesters. When contacted, college principal Sridhar stated that students had ignored his pleas to attend classes. He went on to say that they didn’t even bother to collect their TCs.

MU VC Prof Yadpadithaya said many Muslim girl students had met him seeking his help to get admitted to colleges with their combination. “As these issues cannot be resolved, I had directed them to approach Karnataka State Open University (KSOU),” the VC told DH.

“I had informed students that education was more important than religion,” he said.

It may be recalled that on May 27 Vice-Chancellor P Subrahmanya Yadapadithaya assured to facilitate the Muslim female students, who had submitted a memorandum to allow them to wear hijab in classrooms, in securing admission to other colleges.

“We have learned that about 15 girls are firm about wearing the hijab to class. We are ready to counsel these girls and make them understand the Karnataka high court order. If counselling does not work, we will help them get admission in educational institutions where the hijab is allowed or where there are no uniforms,” the VC added.

Students launch protest at Mangaluru University College

The controversy erupted on Thursday (May 26) after a group of students from the University College in Mangaluru had protested against the college authorities, alleging that a few Muslim girl students were attending classes in hijab in violation of the Karnataka High Court order.

The protesting students contended that they were being forced to wear the college uniform while the 44 Muslim students were being allowed to wear hijab to college. The students also alleged that some of them were wearing the hijab in the classrooms too.

They also hit out at the college principal and other concerned authorities for failing to enforce uniform rules on the college premises. The students alleged that the college authorities were under pressure from a local political leader.

Karnataka Hijab row

The Karnataka Hijab row started out in January this year at a Pre-University College in Udupi where a group of 6 Muslim girls insisted that they be allowed to take classes in their hijab

Given that uniforms were in existence at the said PU college since 1985, the school administration refused to relent to their religious diktat. Thereafter, the girls refused to enter classrooms and began holding protests within the premises of the college.

With the backing of Islamist outfits such as PFI and Campus Front of India, the ‘hijab movement’ spread to other schools and colleges in Karnataka. The hijab row witnessed the mobilization of Islamists and counter-protests by Hindu students, demanding the concept of uniformity in schools.

When the matter reached the Karnataka High Court, it ruled that Hijab is not an essential practice in Islam and that uniform is a reasonable restriction on the ‘Right to Religion.’

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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