Hijab Row in Udupi: Five Students Display Placards Demanding Justice
Udupi: For the last three weeks, eight students from a government pre-university college for girls in the Udupi district of Karnataka have been barred from entering their classroom for wearing the hijab or headscarf.
On January 20, five students staged a protest by displaying placards in front of the College gate and demanded Justice.
Like Placards slogans ‘Hijab is my right and need it at any coast’, ‘we want justice’, ‘We are made to stand out of the Class for wearing Hijab’, ‘It’s my Fundamental right’, ‘We need Justices were’ displayed.
Speaking to media persons one of the students Aliya Asadi said, “Our parents have appealed several times to the college authorities but there is no positive response. When I was in first PU, I was coming to the class with Hijab. The college authorities forcibly asked me to remove it. Now that we are protesting against the College authorities, the principal is harassing us. We need education and also the college authorities allow us to wear the Hijab”.
Another student Aliya Banu said, “We are wearing our uniform shawl as Hijab but the college authority is not permitting us. Our family members are supporting us. Unfortunately, we are not allowed to attend the classes and the exams are nearing. The College authorities should allow us to wear the Hijab”.
The protesting students say that they will continue to fight for their right to wear the hijab, and insist that it is a part of their faith. They once again urged the management of the college to allow them to return to their classrooms wearing the hijab.
The students, who are studying in commerce and science streams in classes 11 and 12, say that they have not attended classes since December 27 as per the directions of the college principal Rudre Gowda. They have been marked absent even though they have gone to the college during this period.
Udupi MLA and also the president of the College development committee Raghupathi Bhat said, “Since 1985, the college has been following the dress code. Now, some students are demanding to allow them to wear the Hijab inside the classroom. For the past 18 months, they were attending the classes wearing the college uniform. But some people are using the students and trying to create problems by bringing politics into the college”.
MLA further said, “The state government should decide on the issue of wearing the uniform in the Schools/Colleges. We have already written a letter to the PU board in this regard and we are waiting for the board’s decision. If the students are worried about their education then they should come to the class following the college rules. Once the department has clarified their stand, then the students have to take their own decision”, he said.