The Karnataka government said on Thursday that the High Court order upholding the ban on hijab in educational institutions in the state will continue pending a final ruling from the Supreme Court, which ruled today a split verdict on appeals challenging the restriction on girls and women wearing headscarves in schools. and colleges. The state’s Education Minister, BC Nagesh, said the ban on wearing the hijab in educational institutions in the state will remain for the time being.
Shortly after the Supreme Court handed down its split verdict, the minister said “we expect better judgment”, saying women around the world are demanding not to wear the hijab and burqa. “As a democratic government, we welcome any order we have received from the Honorable Supreme Court. But we expected a better judgment because, as you know – all over the world – women are demanding not to wear the hijab and burqa,” BC Nagesh said addressing a press conference today.
“We welcome the verdict of the Supreme Court. The Karnataka HC Ordinance remains enforceable in the meantime. The ban on wearing hijab in educational institutions in the state remains,” Nagesh said. Asked about organizations supporting the wearing of hijab in educational institutions, the Karnataka Minister said, “They will always want to divide this society. They use hijab to divide society.”
A two-judge bench consisting of Justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia delivered judgment today. While Judge Hemant Gupta said it was a “difference of opinion” in dismissing the group of motions against the Karnataka High Court’s March 15 order on the hijab case, the Judge Sudhanshu Dhulia allowed the appeals and overturned the HC’s verdict.
“It’s a matter of choice, nothing more nothing less,” Judge Dhulia said as he issued the order. Judge Gupta said: “There is a difference of opinion. In my order I have stated 11 questions. The first is whether the appeal should be returned to the Constitutional Bench.” Barrister Ezaz Maqbool, representing the petitioner, said the case will be placed before the Chief Justice of India and he will decide whether a new bench will hear the case or the case is referred to a bigger bench. .
The Supreme Court had previously reserved its order on various petitions challenging the Karnataka High Court upholding the ban on hijab in educational institutions. Arguments in the matter lasted for 10 days during which 21 attorneys from the side of the petitioners and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, Additional Solicitor General KM Nataraj, Attorney General of Karnataka Prabhuling Navadgi argued for the respondents.
The court was hearing various pleas challenging the Karnataka HC judgment upholding the Karnataka government’s decision to order educational institutions to prescribe uniforms in educational institutions. One of the appeals to the highest court had alleged “mother-in-law behavior by government authorities which prevented students from practicing their faith and resulted in an undesirable public order situation”.
The appeal said the High Court, in its contested order, “violently failed to apply its spirit and was unable to appreciate the gravity of the situation as well as the centrality of the essential religious practices enshrined in Section 25 of the Constitution of India”. A Karnataka High Court bench comprising Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi, Justice Krishna S Dixit and Justice JM Khazi previously ruled that the uniform requirement was a reasonable restriction which students could not object to. and had dismissed various petitions challenging the hijab ban in educational institutions saying they are without merit.
The hijab row erupted in January this year when Government PU College, Udupi allegedly banned six hijab-wearing girls from entering. Following this, the girls sat down in protest outside the college after being refused entry. After that, boys from several colleges in Udupi started attending classes wearing saffron scarves. This protest has also spread to other parts of the state, leading to protests and unrest in several places in Karnataka.
As a result, the Karnataka government declared that all students must adhere to uniform and banned the hijab and saffron headscarves until a committee of experts ruled on the matter. On February 5, the Board of Pre-College Education issued a circular stating that students could only wear uniforms approved by the school administration and that no other religious attire would be permitted in colleges. (ANI)
(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)