Girl students in many parts of Karnataka were denied entry into their respective educational institutions on Saturday as they arrived in Hijabs, despite a court order, as the issue showed no signs of abating after its flare-up about a fortnight ago that prompted the government to close down colleges and institutions for a couple of days.
Despite a government order and the Karnataka High Court's interim order restricting students from wearing Hijab or saffron scarves in classrooms, the girls came to schools and colleges donning a headscarf.
Colleges and schools, where girl students came wearing Hijab asked them to remove them to be allowed entry. However, the students did not budge.
At the SJVP College at Harihar in Davangere, girls with Hijab were not denied entry. The pupils refused to go inside without the scarf, stressing that it was as important as education and they cannot give up their rights.
In Vijay Paramedical College in Belagavi, students complained to the reporters that a holiday was announced by the institution for an indefinite period due to the Hijab issue.
"We will not sit without scarves. Let the college realise how it affects our education. The Principal is not listening to us," a student told the media.
In Ballari, a group of girls were not allowed inside the Sarala Devi College, which has been witnessing protest from the day the controversy erupted and the government ordered no one should wear clothes that could disturb the peace, harmony and, law and order.
A similar scene unfolded at the Government College at Gangavathi in Koppal, where girls were not allowed inside the college. In Kudur village in Ramanagara district, some students staged a demonstration on the college ground after they were not allowed to enter the classrooms.
On January 1, six girl students of a college in Udupi attended a press conference held by Campus Front of India (CFI) in the coastal town protesting against the college authorities denying them entry into the classroom by wearing a Hijab.
This was four days after they requested the principal permission to wear Hijabs in classes which was not allowed. Till then, students used to wear Hijab to the campus and entered the classroom after removing the scarves, the college principal Rudre Gowda had said.
"The institution did not have any rule on Hijab-wearing as such and since no one used to wear it to the classroom in the last 35 years. The students who came with the demand had the backing of outside forces," Gowda had said.
The government declared a holiday for the educational institutions following a hijab versus saffron scarf row, even as the Karnataka High Court is hearing a case by Muslim girls challenging the hijab ban. The educational institutions, including pre-university colleges, were gradually reopened early this week.
With PTI inputs.