Security stepped up in Udupi after SC verdict on Hijab case
Mangaluru, Oct 13: Following the split verdict by the Supreme Court on the Hijab case, the security has been beefed up in Udupi district where the controversy broke out in January.
The district administration is keeping a close watch on social media sites to ensure peace is not disturbed in the communally-sensitive region.
"Precautionary measures like police picketing in important areas and continued patrolling taken; also keeping close watch on social media to make sure no attempts made to harm existing peace in the society," ANI quoted Akshay Hakay, the Superintendent of Police Udupi, in a tweet after the split verdict by the apex court.
The Supreme Court on Thursday delivered a split verdict on pleas that challenged a judgment of the Karnataka High Court which had upheld the ban on hijab in educational institutions.
Justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia had reserved the order following a marathon ten-day hearing. The students had filed an appeal against the HC order which had held that prohibition on hijab in classrooms was a reasonable restriction and that hijab was not an essential religious practice in Islam.
The controversy had broke out in Udupi after a government college banned Muslim girls from wearing hijab. There were protests in Udupi and several other districts over the issue in Karnataka.
The matter reached the Karnataka High Court which dismissed petitions filed by a section of Muslim students from the Government Pre-University Girls College in Udupi seeking permission to wear Hijab inside classrooms, saying the headscarf is not a part of the essential religious practice in Islamic faith.
The prescription of school uniform is only a reasonable restriction, constitutionally permissible which the students cannot object to, a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi had further noted.
Meanwhile, Karnataka minister BC Nagesh welcomed the latest verdict by the Supreme Court. "We welcome Supreme Court verdict. We had expected a better judgement as women worldwide are demanding to not wear hijab. Karnataka HC order remains applicable in interim time; ban on wearing of hijab in educational institutions of the state remains," ANI quoted him as saying.