Published: 09th February 2022
Why did Madhya Pradesh's School Education Minister backtrack on plan to ban the hijab in schools?
The Minister added that the School Education Department is working to implement a dress code in schools across MP to ensure that a sense of equality and discipline prevails among all students
The BJP government in Madhya Pradesh on Wednesday, February 9, said that no proposal to ban hijab in educational institutions in the state is under its consideration even as state's School Education Minister Inder Singh Parmar, who had backed a hijab ban and proposed a dress code in schools, said that his statement was "wrongly interpreted".
"There is no controversy over (the wearing of) hijab in Madhya Pradesh. No proposal is under consideration by the state government regarding the hijab ban. So, there should be no confusion in this regard," Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra, who is also spokesperson of the state government, told reporters. When asked about the protests for and against the wearing of hijab or headscarves in Karnataka, Mishra said this matter is related to Karnataka which is pending before the High Court there.
Protests for and against the hijab intensified at colleges in different parts of Karnataka after the state government last week issued an order making uniforms prescribed by it or management of private institutions mandatory for its students at schools and pre-university colleges across the state. Speaking on the campus unrest in parts of Karnataka, BJP's national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, who hails from Indore, on Wednesday, February 9, said that schools are to gain knowledge and not to spread religious fanaticism. "An attempt is being made to spread religious hysteria in Karnataka schools by insisting on wearing the hijab. A school has its own dress code and it should be strictly followed," Vijayvargiya tweeted.
Meanwhile, Parmar issued a video statement stating that his remarks about the uniform in schools were related to "uniformity, discipline and identity of schools". A day before, Parmar had said that "since the hijab is not part of the uniform, so I think it should be banned." He had said that the School Education Department is working to implement a dress code in schools across MP to ensure that a sense of equality and discipline prevails among all students.
"This will be implemented from the next (academic) session," Parmar told reporters. On Wednesday, he said, "Some people wrongly interpreted my remarks and presented it with a wrong reference. I am refuting it. We are not going to implement a new uniform code. There is no work underway in this direction. Present arrangement in schools regarding the uniform will continue."