By Muslim Mirror
Young Muslim students right to education been imperiled by Karanataka Hijab ban: PUCL Report
Thousands of Muslim girls and women in Karnataka have been denied access to education as a result of the state government’s order prohibiting hijabs in educational institutions and the High Court ruling that upheld the directive, according to a report by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties.
According to the organisation, which cited testimonies from students across the state, the High Court’s decision violated a number of rights.
“These rights which have been violated include Right to Education without Discrimination, Right to Equality, Right to Dignity, Right to Privacy, Right to Expression, Right to Non-Discrimination and Freedom from Arbitrary State Action,” the PUCL report said.
The organisation claimed that because the Karnataka government’s “single-minded focus on ensuring that the hijab was prohibited in colleges” it had entirely disregarded its constitutional duty.
According to the report, the instruction forced numerous students to leave their academic programmes.
The PUCL urged Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai to rescind the notification that prohibited hijab wear in schools and colleges.
It also urged the judiciary to conduct an investigation into why the government made such a “sudden, arbitrary and unconstitutional” decision.
“The human rights commission and minority commission should register suo motu complaints against the principals and CDCs [college development committees] for violating the fundamental rights of the concerned students and initiate actions at the earliest,” the organisation said.
According to the PUCL study, security measures implemented in educational institutions as a result of the court case made students fearful of attending schools and colleges. It also took note of incidents in which Hindu boys allegedly sent threatening messages through WhatsApp groups.
“They said that they wanted to punish us and kill us, and other similar threats,” the report quoted a student as saying.
Students also told the organisation that some boys harassed them in public and called them “O Hijab” and “O Burkha.” The survey found that several colleges encouraged harassment rather than defending their students.
“When the principal sees us, he admonishes us, asks me why we continue to study here. Why we continue to wear the hijab, and other such taunting questions,” the report quoted a student as saying.