Expected Unanimous Decision From SC on Hijab Issue, Says Owaisi

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Clarion India

NEW DELHI – The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) Chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Thursday said he was expecting a unanimous judgment from the Supreme Court on Karnataka hijab ban issue.

His statement was in response to a two-judge bench of the Apex Court on Thursday delivered a split verdict on the hijab ban in Karnataka’s educational institutions, with one judge holding permitting a community to wear its religious symbols will be an “antithesis to secularism” and the other insisting that wearing the Muslim headscarf should be simply a “matter of choice”.

“Different judgments have come. We were expecting that there would a unanimous decision in favour of the Karnataka Muslim girls who are going to schools wearing hijab,” he told reporters here.

He welcomed the decision of one judge in favour of hijab.

While Justice Hemant Gupta dismissed the appeals challenging the March 15 judgment of the Karnataka High Court, which had refused to lift the ban, Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia held there shall be no restriction on the wearing of hijab anywhere in the schools and colleges of the state.

Owaisi opined that the Karnataka HC’s earlier judgment “was bad in law. Bad in terms of its contents.”

On March 15, the high court had dismissed the petitions filed by a section of Muslim students of Government Pre-University Girls College in Karnataka’s Udupi seeking permission to wear hijab inside classrooms, ruling that it is not a part of the essential religious practice in Islamic faith.

Owaisi further said he can comment fully only when the copy of the Supreme Court verdict is available.

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