The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday ruled that wearing a Hijab was not an essential religious practice in the Islamic faith and upheld the government-imposed ban. The three-judge bench led by Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi said that the Karnataka state government was empowered to issue its February 5 government order that banned the hijab in educational institutions.
The high court added that students could not object to the prescription of a uniform which was a reasonable restriction of one's right to free speech and privacy.
The high court's order came weeks after the high court concluded hearing the matter on a daily basis for 11 days. The high court on February 11 had passed an interim order banning the hijab and the saffron scarf in educational institutions where a uniform is prescribed.
During the hearing, the government college had submitted that it was the Campus Front of India (CFI) a "rank radical" organization, and not the students who were protesting the hijab ban. The state government on the other hand argued that wearing a hijab was not an essential right, it also submitted that educational institutions were no place to assert one's religious identity.