'Our constitutional right': Mehbooba Mufti on J&K school denying entry for girls in 'Abaya'
Earlier students of Vishwa Bharati School, Rainawari staged a protest after the administration disallowed Abaya-wearing students from entering the premises.
Hitting out at a school administration in Rainawari here for allegedly not allowing 'Abaya'-wearing girl students to enter the school premises, Jammu and Kashmir Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP) chief Mehbooba Mufti said it was an attack on religious freedom guaranteed by the Constitution.
Abaya is a loose-fitting, full-length robe worn by Muslim women.
"It is our personal right to decide what to wear and what not to wear. Don't force us to do anything which is against our religion. It is our constitutional right what we wear or eat", Mufti told media here on Thursday.
She further said, "Earlier we saw such incidents in Karnataka and now we are seeing this being implemented in Kashmir. We will never accept this and there will be strong reactions to this incident."
"They want to turn this country into Godse's country and Jammu and Kashmir have become a laboratory for that", she said.
She further alleged, "They are now harassing Islamic scholars like Dawoodi, Veeri. Last day NIA summoned senior Islamic scholar Rehmat-ullah of Bandipora which is unacceptable. If the situation is normal after the abrogation of Article 370 why Islamic scholars are being summoned by NIA."
Earlier on Thursday, students of Vishwa Bharati School, Rainawari staged a protest after the school administration allegedly disallowed Abaya-wearing students from entering the school premises.
"We were not allowed to enter the school saying that if we can't wear 'Abaya' to school. They closed the gates on us. Then when it became an issue after the police and media arrived, they changed their statements", one of the protesting students said.
Responding to the allegations, the school administration told the media that the students were asked to follow the school dress-code, adding that, the school is not against any religious beliefs or Hijab.
Earlier in January this year, a Hijab row erupted in Government PU College in Karnataka's Udupi after the college administration allegedly barred six girls wearing the Hijab from entering. Following this, the girls sat in protest outside the college over being denied entry.
After this, boys of several colleges in Udupi started attending classes wearing saffron scarves. This protest spread to other parts of the state as well leading to protests and agitations in several places in Karnataka.
As a result, the Karnataka government said that all students must adhere to the uniform and banned both Hijab and saffron scarves till an expert committee decided on the issue.
On February 5, the pre-University education board released a circular stating that the students could only wear the uniform approved by the school administration and no other religious attire would be allowed in colleges.
- Mehbooba Mufti