Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi dismissed all petitions challenging the ban on hijab and upheld the Government Order from February 5 banning hijab across all educational institutions in Karnataka.
According to a report by ANI, the Karnataka High Court observed that ‘wearing of hijab is not essential religious practice of Islamic faith,’ and added that ‘prescription of uniform is a reasonable restriction on fundamental rights.’
Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai urged people to cooperate with the govt in implementing the HC ‘hijab row‘ verdict, but the Muslim students who had challenged the ban vowed not to attend college until they get ‘justice.’
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh opined on the judgment that ‘Everybody should welcome Karnataka HC’s judgement on hijab.’
‘Karnataka High Court gave its judgment today (on hijab) and it should be welcomed. The dress code of school/college must be followed by everyone of any religion’vthe Defence Minister tweeted.
‘The uproar over the Hijab was to keep Muslim girls out of formal education and play with Talibanist thinking so that they do not get formal education. Decision taken by the court is absolutely right according to the constitution and society of India’v said Union Minister Mukhtar Naqvi on the verdict.
Former Chief Minister of Karnatka B S Yediyurappa said that the Karnataka HC’s verdict proves Constitution is supreme over religion and its beliefs
Senior Advocate AM Dhar one of petitioner(s) in the case challenged the decision saying ‘Wearing Hijab is an essential practice in Islam. Karnataka HC’s verdict on Hijab is a bad judgment. We’ll challenge the judgment before Supreme Court. We hope that justice will prevail in the Supreme Court.’
A plea was later filed in the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
The plea says that the Karnataka high court, while upholding the ban on the hijab, has failed to note that the Indian legal system explicitly recognizes the wearing/carrying of religious symbols.
The petitioner has said the High Court has ‘erred in creating a dichotomy of freedom of religion and freedom of conscience wherein the court has inferred that those who follow a religion cannot have the right to conscience.’
‘The High Court has failed to note that the right to wear a hijab comes under the ambit of the right to privacy under Article 21 of the Constitution of India. It is submitted that the freedom of conscience forms a part of the right to privacy,’ it said.
The plea said the petitioner had approached the High Court seeking redressal for the alleged violation of their fundamental rights against the State Government order of February 5, 2022, issued under Sections 7 and 133 of the Karnataka Education Act, 1983.
‘The impugned government order directed the college development committees all over the state of Karnataka to prescribe a ‘student uniform’ that mandated the students to wear the official uniform and in absence of any designated uniform the students were mandated to wear an uniform that was in the essence of unity, equality and public order,’ it said.
The plea said the high court failed to note that the Karnataka Education Act, 1983 and the rules made thereunder do not provide for any mandatory uniform to be worn by students.
Meanwhile, a caveat has also been filed in the apex court by another person, who was a party before the High Court, seeking to be heard before any order is passed in the matter.
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