Authorities in Madhya Pradesh have ordered a probe after a video of a girl allegedly offering namaz in classroom surfaced, as per reports on Saturday. Right-wing organisation Hindu Jagran Manch submitted a complaint in the matter to Dr Hari Singh Gour University, reportedly along with a video clip that captured the said incident.
The girl in the video was purportedly clad in a hijab and prayed as per the Islamic faith inside the university premises. The university has constituted a five-member committee to launch an inquiry into the incident. A report is expected to be submitted in three days following which, action will be taken, as per PTI.
This update in MP comes amid tensions in Karnataka surrounding the hijab row. For several weeks, girls across many colleges in the state had been protesting to be allowed to attend classes in their hijabs – a head covering worn by Muslim women. The Karnataka High Court recently delivered a verdict in the case, upholding the state government’s ban on the hijab on public campuses. More on that here.
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As told to PTI, a member of the right-wing group claimed that the girl had been attending classes in hijab for a long time but the namaz incident was a new one. “Such religious activities should not be allowed in the educational institutions… This is objectionable as educational institutions are a place for every religion,” they said, calling for a “basic ethical dressing” in classrooms.
The university reportedly does not have a dress code and hijabs are allowed on campus.
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The vice-chancellor of the MP university was quoted saying by Times Now that they have “directed all students that since this is a central university, all religious acts are to be done in personal premises/religious places.”
As the hijab row sparked a national debate, Madhya Pradesh minister Inder Singh Parmar had told the press in February that schools in the state would soon take a call on banning hijabs in classrooms, following in the footsteps of Karnataka. “Hijab is not a part of uniform and, therefore, I feel it should be banned,” he had said, suggesting the implementation of a “uniform dress code.”