No doubt, hijab an essential part of our religion : Muslim girls fighting hijab ban

Six Muslim students of Udupi government college who were fighting against hijab ban in educational institutions in Karnataka said their legal fight will continue.

“We are disappointed with the high court judgement. We feel betrayed,” students responded to Karnataka High Court’s Tuesday judgment, upholding hijab ban in educational institutions in the State.

Students whose petitions seeking permission to wear Hijab inside the classrooms were dismissed by the Karnataka High Court said they will not go to college without hijab and fight the case legally till they get “justice”.

They also claimed the verdict was ‘unconstitutional’.

“We didn’t get justice by the High Court judgement. We thought HC will upheld constitutional values. We won’t go to college without hijab. If Ambedkar was alive he would be crying,” say six girl student petitioners from Udupi in a press conference in the coastal town Udupi.

“Hijab is important and an essential part of our religion,” they said.

The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday upheld the State government order effectively banning the wearing of hijab by Muslim girl students in educational institutions in Karnataka.

“Hijab is not a part of essential religious practices of Islam and thus, is not protected under Article 25 of the Constitution,” said a three-judge Bench of Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justices Krishna S Dixit and JM Khazi.

Accordingly, the Court has dismissed the petitions filed by Muslim girl students, challenging the action of government PU colleges in denying their entry for wearing hijab.

Muslim students in Karnataka have been protesting the ban on hijab in educational institutions, saying the Islamophobic move of the Karnataka government violates their religious freedom guaranteed under India’s constitution.

Muslim students, activists, and Opposition leaders across the country allege that these attacks on Muslim symbols and practices are part of the larger Hindutva agenda of imposing majoritarian values on the country’s 200 million Muslims.

Soon after the verdict, Muslim students in Karnataka who have been fighting against hijab ban, Muslim leaders, human rights defenders, Opposition parties said the verdict is enabling discrimination against Muslim students and it suspends the fundamental rights of hijab wearing students.