Published: 14th October 2022
Withdraw hijab order, appeals All India Muslim Personal Law Board to the Karnataka government
The AIMPLA General Secretary Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani said that Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia's view on the hijab case was in line with the requirements of the Indian Constitution
After the Supreme Court's split verdict in the hijab case, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLA) appealed to the Karnataka government to withdraw its order on the hijab.
The board said that if the government does so, the issue would dissolve, as stated in a report by ANI. To recall, following the judgment, Karnataka Education Minister BC Nagesh stated that the ban on wearing hijab in educational institutions of the state remains.
"The education of women in the country, especially among Muslims, receives less attention, and hence the government should not support initiatives that create obstacles in the way of girls' education," the board's statement said on Thursday, October 13, as per ANI.
Notably, the Karnataka Government order had directed government schools in Karnataka to abide by the prescribed uniform and the private schools were directed to mandate a uniform as decided by their Board of Management.
On Thursday, a bench of justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia pronounced a split judgement on the hijab issue. Justice Gupta, upholding the Karnataka High Court judgement, said, "The essential religious practices of the followers of Sikh faith cannot be made the basis of wearing of hijab/headscarf by the believers of the Islamic faith."
Justice Dhulia set aside the earlier judgment of Karnataka High Court on the hijab issue. He said that whether hijab is an Essential Religious Practice is not important to the decision of whether girls can wear hijabs inside their classrooms. He said that the High Court took a "wrong path" to its judgement. "If the belief is sincere and it harms no one else, then there can be no justifiable reason for banning hijab in a classroom," said Justice Dhulia in his judgement, according to LiveLaw.
"In any case as to what constitutes ERP, in all its complexities, is a matter which is pending consideration before a nine-judge Constitutional Bench of this court and therefore, in any case, it may not be proper for me to go any further into this aspect," he said while hearing various appeals challenging an order passed by the Full Bench of the Karnataka High Court on March 15, which dismissed the pleas challenging the Government order dated February 5.
The AIMPLA General Secretary Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani said that Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia's view on the hijab case was in line with the requirements of the Indian Constitution and personal freedom and that his focus was on promoting education of girls and on removing barriers in the way of that was "something to welcome."
"Due to the divided opinion of the judges, the issue will now be referred to the larger bench. The board has so far supported the pro-hijab side in the Karnataka High Court. When the matter reached the Supreme Court, the Board became a party to it, and presented its position with full readiness," the Muslim Personal Law Board's statement further read.
"The Board will continue to play its part in the fight of these young girls to carry on with hijab with full strength and willingness," it added.