Siddaramaiah’s Big Hijab Announcement In Karnataka

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'Wear What You Want': Siddaramaiah's Big Hijab Announcement

Bengaluru:

The Karnataka government on Friday announced it will soon withdraw the ban on wearing hijab. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said there was no effective hijab ban in the state, adding that women can “wear anything they want.”

“Hijab ban isn’t there anymore. (Women) can wear hijab and go anywhere. I have directed to withdraw the (ban) order. How you dress and what you eat is your choice. Why should I obstruct you?,” the chief minister said while addressing a gathering in Mysore.

Mr Siddaramaiah said that people in the state were free to wear and eat whatever they choose to. “Wear what you want. Eat what you want. I will eat what I want, you eat what you want. I wear dhoti, you wear pant shirt. What’s wrong in that?” he added.

In 2022, the BJP government under Chief Minister B Bommai had banned the head covering in educational institutes of the state leading to a massive row. After several students moved the court against the ban, the Karnataka High Court upheld the state’s ban, saying that wearing a hijab “is not an essential religious practice of Islam” and educational institutes can decide the dress code for all their students.

The matter went to the Supreme Court, which delivered a split verdict, with one judge maintaining that the state is authorised to enforce uniform in schools and the other describing hijab as a matter of choice.

In June, after the Congress government was voted to power, Karnataka minister Priyank Kharge told NDTV that the “any law” brought by the BJP government” which was deemed “regressive” would be repealed by the new state government. “Any regressive policy that impedes the growth of Karnataka economically and is going to take the state backwards will be reviewed and repealed if necessary,” the leader said hinting at the hijab ban and the controversial anti-cow slaughter bill.

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