Hijab row: 13 Muslim girls boycott exam in Karnataka
Even as the majority of Muslim students in the Indian State of Karnataka on Monday attended classes without wearing hijab as per the High Court’s interim order, 13 students from the Government High School in Shivamogga district refused to take the SSLC (Class 10) preparatory examination after being asked to remove hijab, reports The Statesman.
The students of Government Public School of Shivamogga district were stopped by teachers and asked to remove their hijab. The students, however, outrightly refused to shun hijab and demanded that they be allowed to write exams.
The teachers and school management tried to convince them by asking them to write exams in a separate room without a hijab. However, the students rejected the offer and decided to boycott the examination. Parents of the girls, who reached school there, also supported their children and took them home saying that without hijab they can’t attend classes.
Aliya Mehat, a student who boycotted the exam for hijab, said, “The court is yet to give order, whatever it is we will not take off hijab. It is okay if we don’t write exams. Exams are not important for me, religion is important. We will not come to school if hijab is not made mandatory. My parents have asked me to come back home if asked to take off my hijab,” she said. However, more than 100 other Muslim girls, who are studying in the school, attended the classes without a hijab.
Meanwhile, Congress legislators attended the joint session of the assembly wearing black badges amid hijab row under the leadership of Opposition leader Siddaramaiah. The party maintained that they were “protesting the collapse of constitutional values during the administration of the BJP in the state.”
Kaneez Fathima, the Congress MLA attended the first-day session clad in hijab. While taking part in a protest against restrictions on wearing hijab by Muslim students, she had said that she would attend the Assembly session in hijab and dared the ruling party to stop her. BJP MLC D.S. Arun attended the council wearing a saffron shawl.