After Karnataka, the issue of wearing hijabs in Rajasthan schools is heating up. This comes after BJP MLA from Jaipur's Hawa Mahal, Balmukund Acharya objected to some girls wearing hijab in a government school.
In videos that surfaced after Acharya's visit to Government Girls Secondary School in Jaipur’s Gangapol locality, he can be seen asking authorities to stop students from wearing the hijab in school.
Rajasthan Cabinet Minister Kirodi Lal Meena supported Acharya's demand of banning hijabs in school by saying, "The dress code in schools should be followed," and pledged to talk to CM Bhajan Lal Sharma on the matter.
After this Monday incident, Rajasthan Education Minister Madan Dilawar sought a report from the education department on Tuesday (30 January) about which states have banned hijabs in schools.
However, after Acharya's remarks in school, a protest by Muslim students followed where they gheraoed the Subhash Chowk police station and demanded the BJP MLA's apology for "vitiating" the school atmosphere.
A protesting student attacked BJP MLA for his saffron attire and was quoted as saying by The Indian Express, “He goes to the Assembly wearing a saffron robe... So why this discrimination against the hijab?”
Muslim and Hindu students submitted different complaints to the police, alleging they are not being allowed to follow their religious practices in school, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Jaipur North) Rashi Dogra said.
Nishtha Anushree is Senior Sub-editor at Swarajya. She tweets at @nishthaanushree.
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