Published: 08th February 2022
As hijab and saffron shawl row intensifies in Bagalkot and Vijayapura, five colleges declare holiday
"As a precaution and to avoid nuisances within the college premises — the management has suspended classes for all the semesters," shared Prof S B Jadhav, Principal, Shri Shanteshwar Degree College
The hijab and saffron shawl row, which was restricted to coastal regions of Karnataka alone, has now flared up in other districts of the North Karnataka region as well, following which, at least five colleges declared holidays when students turned up at the campus wearing saffron shawls in Bagalkot and Vijayapura.
Three colleges declared a holiday in Vijayapura after students attempted to attend classes donning saffron shawls. On Monday, February 7, the first instance occurred in Shri Shanteshwar Pre-University College and Shri Shanteshwar Degree College, Indi town; the second at VM Nagathan Pre-University College, Nidagundi and the third at Basaveshwar Government Pre-University College, Basavana Bagewadi.
"We wish to study and live with harmony and equality in colleges. We tried to convince the Muslim girls but they did not listen and continued to wear headscarves in colleges. If Muslim girls arrive at colleges wearing burqas and headscarves, we will also continue to wear saffron shawls till they give up," shared a student, on the condition of anonymity, who was wearing a saffron shawl.
"India is formed on the basis of Hindu religion. We also have all the rights to follow the traditions and culture of Hindus in institutions. We appeal to everyone to follow the college dress code and not wear anything above uniform based on their religion," stated an intermediate student from Nidagundi.
Even though there were attempts made by principals to persuade saffron shawl-clad students to follow the dress code set by the government, the students continued their protests and demanded that the authorities of the college restrict girls who were wearing hijab from entering the college. When it seemed like the protest was only intensifying, as a precautionary measure, college authorities went on to suspend classes.
Speaking to TNIE, Professor S B Jadhav, Principal, Shri Shanteshwar Degree College, said that, "A group of students belonging to our college have tried to attend classes wearing saffron shawls. Among them, few were forcing their friends to wear the same shawl. As a precaution and to avoid nuisances within the college premises — the management has suspended classes for all the semesters. We have asked the students to abide by the rules rolled out by the state government on dress code recently."
Vijayapura DC P Sunil Kumar said that, "I will direct all the colleges to implement the government order issued regarding the dress code. We will tighten the security across the district to keep law and order in place."
These incidents were also reported in Bagalkot, specifically in Government Pre-University College, Honnur near Jamkhandi and Government Pre-University college in Gudur of Ilkal. Students even submitted a memorandum to the principal, asking the college to restrict those girls who turn up to campus in hijab.