Published: 02nd May 2019
Kozhikode's Muslim Educational Society tells students not to wear face veil, no ban on burqas
The Muslim group says that they have passed the circular following a Kerala High Court order that says that students should not cover faces in class
In a move that has earned the ire of Muslim groups across Kerala, the Kozhikode-based Muslim Educational Society (MES) has issued a circular banning the wearing of a face veil in all educational institutions functioning under it. The circular that was issued on April 17, will come into effect in all colleges functioning under the society, from the 2019-20 academic year.
Several Muslim groups have condemned the move and called it anti-Islamic. A Muslim group called Samastha Kerala Jamiyyathul Ulama posted on Facebook and condemned the move to a few media organisations, "If a woman student in that college wishes to wear a burqa inside the college premises, the management has no right to stop her. This is an ultra-secular move and current head of MES Fazal Ghafoor is masquerading as a clown to please a certain group of people," they posted.
The circular has been passed on the basis of a Kerala High Court order that states that students shall not wear any garments that cover their face to classrooms. The directive has been given to the heads of all colleges under MES,
including Arts and Science, Medical and Engineering colleges. The heads have also been directed to include the rule in the calendar for the upcoming year.
When contacted, an official with the MES said, "The order has been issued to ensure that dress codes that are not acceptable in society are not followed inside the college campuses either." MES runs 150 colleges and was started in 1964 by Dr P K Abdul Gafoor. The society has minority status and has a majority Muslim student populace.
Recently, the Sri Lankan government ordered that the public wearing of the burqa would be banned for security concerns, following the blasts that rocked Colombo on Easter Sunday.