Thursday, April 18, 2024

Supreme Court notice to Karnataka govt over Hijab ban order

The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice to the Karnataka government on a plea seeking stay on Karnataka High Court order upholding ban on wearing Hijab in educational institutions.

The top court will hear the plea next on September 5.

The bench of Justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia was hearing the pleas, with one of the pleas alleging “step-motherly behaviour of government authorities which has prevented students from practising their faith and resulted in an unwanted law and order situation.”

The plea has also alleged that the Karnataka High Court in its impugned order “had vehemently failed to apply its mind and was unable to understand the gravity of the situation as well as the core aspect of the Essential Religious Practices enshrined under Article 25 of the Constitution of India”.

Meanwhile, while hearing today, the apex court pulls up petitioners in the case for seeking adjournment.

“You wanted urgent hearing and when the matter is listed, you seek adjournment. We will not permit forum shopping” said Justice Hemant Gupta says.

Earlier, the pleas were mentioned before a bench headed by the then CJI NV Ramana for urgent hearing on several occasions but the case was not listed for hearing.

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.

The state government’s prohibition on the hijab in educational institutions with a mandatory uniform was confirmed by the Karnataka High Court, and the hijab has been outlawed on most campuses in the state since then.

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