Karnatka Hijab ban: The Supreme Court on Thursday delivered a split verdict in the Karnataka hijab ban controversy case. The apex Court heard the arguments of both the sides and rejects various pleas challenging the Karnataka High Court order that upheld the ban on hijab in educational institutions.
A bench of justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia delivered split verdict.
In view of split verdict on hijab ban case, SC directed to place appeals against Karnataka HC order before CJI for constitution of larger bench.
Earlier, The supreme court had reserved its order on the petitions challenging Karnataka High Court upholding the ban on hijab in educational institutes.
The hearing on the ban case went on for 10 days in which 21 lawyers from the petitioners’ side and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, Additional Solicitor General KM Nataraj, Karnataka Advocate General Prabhuling Navadgi argued for the respondents.
The court was hearing various pleas against Karnataka HC’s judgement upholding the Karnataka Government’s decision to direct educational institutes to prescribe uniforms in educational institutes.
Senior Attorney Dushyant Dave claimed that the Karnataka Government Circular that enforced the dress restriction made no mention of the Popular Front of India (PFI). Senior Advocate Dave was representing the petitioner.
The Karnataka High Court ruling upholding the Karnataka government’s order directing strict enforcement of schools’ and institutions’ uniform regulations has been challenged by a number of petitioners in front of the Supreme Court.
One of the appeals in the top court has alleged “step-motherly behaviour of government authorities which has prevented students from practising their faith and resulted in an unwanted law and order situation”.
The appeal said the High Court in its impugned order “had vehemently failed to apply its mind and was unable to understand the gravity of the situation as well as the core aspect of the Essential Religious Practices enshrined under Article 25 of the Constitution of India”.
A bench of Karnataka High Court comprising Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi, Justice Krishna S Dixit, and Justice JM Khazi had earlier held that the prescription of uniform is a reasonable restriction that students could not object to and dismissed various petitions challenging a ban on hijab in education institutions saying they are without merit.
The hijab row has blowed the country in January this year when the Government PU College in Udupi ‘barred’ six girls wearing the hijab from entering. Following this, the girls sat in protest outside the college over being denied entry.
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