The issue of some Muslim students insisting on wearing the Islamic hijab in violation of the uniform dress code has been brewing for more than a year now.
In Karnataka, where this issue escalated in a big way in January 2022, ended up in the Supreme Court, which is yet to form a Constitution Bench to hear the case.
Before that, the Karnataka high court had dismissed the petitions demanding the public and private educational institutes to allow hijab beyond the uniform as an essential religious practice among Muslims.
So far, schools have faced protests by the minority community over their refusal to allow hijab. In a recent case from Telangana, however, principal and staff members of a school have been booked under religious hate laws for objecting to students wearing hijab in violation of the uniform dress code.
As per various reports, the school is named Zee High School and is located in Hayathnagar.
News agency ANI has quoted sub-inspector of Hayathnagar police station as saying that the two girls, including a Class 10 student who is daughter of a judge, turned up at the school on 22 June in hijab. Principal Purnadevi Srivastava, teachers and other staff members told the girls that they had to remove the hijab as it was violating the dress code.
The next day, the girls turned up in hijab again, and refused to remove it outside the classroom too. A teacher demanded an explanation as to why they had come to the school wearing hijab when the principal had issued clear instructions against doing so. This resulted in an argument.
“While the school authorities did not report the incident to their parents, the students, after reaching home, briefed their guardians on what happened. On the advice of her parents, one of the students lodged a complaint. A case has been registered against the principal and some members of the teaching staff,” the officer told ANI.
As per a report by Deccan Chronicle, the FIR has been filed under Sections 352 (assault or use of force), 295 (a) (deliberate act to outrage religious feelings) and 298 (words meant to hurt religious feelings) of the IPC and Section 23 of the Juvenile Justice Act.
The report has quoted the judiciary officer father of the one of the girls, saying his daughter prays five times a day and is following the Indian Constitution’s Right to religious Act.
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