Karnataka hijab ban: CM suspends classes for three days

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj S Bommai on Tuesday ordered all high schools and colleges to remain shut “to maintain peace and harmony,” following tensions due to the hijab ban in several colleges.

The decision comes after several instances of a stand-off between Muslim students and Hindu students across the state.

Meanwhile, the Karnataka high court will continue the hearing of the Muslim students’ Hijab ban case on Wednesday. The court asked students and the public at large to maintain peace.

“This court has full faith in the wisdom and virtue of public at large and it hopes that the same would be put to practice,” Justice Dixit Krishna Shripad said.

Karnataka government is accusing conspiracy behind the new tensions.

“SDPI-backed Campus Front of India is behind it. Complete details will be known after investigation. Law and order must be maintained in the state,” claimed BC Nagesh, Karnataka Primary & Secondary Education Minister.

The controversy started last month at the Government Girls PU college in Udupi district as six Muslim girl students were barred from classes for wearing headscarves and many Muslim girls took up the practice in protest.

Dozens of Muslim students have been suffering following the ban. Muslim groups are outraged by the move.

On Tuesday, several Hindu students wearing saffron shawls nearly clashed with protesting hijab-clad students in Mahatma Gandhi Memorial College in Udupi. Many of these students identified themselves as being a part of the ABVP (student wing of the BJP) and the Hindu Jagarana Vedike.