Tension prevails in Karnataka as hijab-clad students turned away citing HC ordertext_fields
Karnataka: The tension surrounding the controversial hijab row continues to prevail in Karnataka as pre-university and degree colleges in the state reopened today.
As per reports, instances of spats between students and college authorities have been recorded from several areas after the girls were asked to remove their hijabs and sit in the classroom.
The Government PU college at Vijayapura in north Karnataka, which allowed hijabs earlier, did not allow students wearing hijabs to enter the classrooms today. The college administration argued that they were only following interim orders of the court, which had allowed schools and colleges to resume only on the condition that no religious clothing be allowed in classrooms.
The students, however, say the college did not inform them that they would not be allowed in hijabs or burkhas.
"We are in accordance with the High Court's order that says no religious garment, whether hijab or saffron shawls, will be allowed inside educational institutions," the Principal can be heard saying.
After a squabble, a separate space inside the college was allotted to these students to take off their hijabs and burkhas, and enter the classrooms.
The Principal had stopped these students at the entrance of the college but they forced their way in and protested against being denied entry.
In DVS College in Shivamogga, the girls who stood outside the college gate told reporters that their faith was more important than any government order.
As the tension simmered in Sagara government pre-university college in Shivamogga district, the college authorities announced a holiday for the day.
The high court will resume hearing the case later in the day at 2.30 pm. Meanwhile, Section 144 has been imposed in Bagalkot, Bangalore, Chikkaballapura, Gadag, Shimoga, Tumkur, Mysore, Udupi, and Dakshina Kannada.
However, Karnataka home minister Araga Jnanendra on Wednesday said that the overall situation is peaceful across the state. "Few incidents reported (on the alleged denial of entry for girl students into schools with their headscarves and Burqa). We've to follow the interim order passed by HC. If anyone violates the order action will be taken as per law," he told ANI.
On February 14, students at some Karnataka schools were directed to remove their hijabs before entering the campus, in accordance with an interim High Court order that said educational institutions could re-open (after having been shut last week) but no religious clothing would be allowed.