“It judicially sanctions apartheid. It is going to set a worrying precedent and further push Muslim women out of educational spaces. Its implications are going to be felt across the nation. It will push the Hindu extremists to demean Muslim women in public spaces.”Dr Shafiqur Rehman on the judgment by Karnataka’s High Court to uphold a ban on wearing a hijab in classes at school
By Akhlad Khan – Twitter @BawaNaaved
Samajwadi Political Party MP from Sambhal district of Uttar Pradesh state in India, Dr Shafiqur Rehman Barq, has said that he is not satisfied with Karnataka’s High Court judgement banning the wearing of Hijab by Muslim students in classrooms. “We are shocked by the court declaring that hijab is not an essential Islamic practice. This is not for Police or Administration or any court to decide. The hijab has a clear mandate in Quran”, Barq said.
The High Court of Karnataka has upheld a ban on the veil/hijab in classrooms citing Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi on Tuesday as saying in a judgement, “We are of the considered opinion that wearing of hijab by Muslim women does not form a part of essential religious practice.”
However, Lawyer Anas Tanwir, in a tweet said that he will represent the girls who are now planning to appeal to the Supreme Court, and called the Karnataka court’s ruling “disappointing” and “erroneous”.
The hijab dispute has led to criticism that India’s Muslims are being further marginalised.
Expressing his views on the judgement, Barq said “It judicially sanctions apartheid. It is going to set a worrying precedent and further push Muslim women out of educational spaces. Its implications are going to be felt across the nation. It will push the Hindu extremists to demean Muslim women in public spaces.”
“Veil/Hijab is an Order in The Qur’an, just like Namaz (5 daily prayers), if any Muslim woman does not follow it, it would be her choice, but this doesn’t give any one the authority to decide whether to wear it or not. Court’s order is not constitutional, it is violating the fundamental rights of Muslim women. This is the BJP and RSS’ sheer propaganda, I don’t know how the court is delivering such verdicts. Muslim women must not stop wearing Hijab, it should he filed in the apex court”, Barq added.
Karnataka’s hijab dispute began in January when a government-run school in the state’s Udupi district barred female Muslim students that wear veil/hijabs from entering classrooms, triggering protests by Muslims and counter-protests by the students of the Hindu community.