Hijab row: ‘Committee to investigate’ after students offer namaz in MP college

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A video that shows a Muslim student in hijab offering namaz in a Madya Pradesh university has led to a controversy, reported NDTV.

The video, shared on social media, shows the student offering namaz inside a classroom in Dr Harisingh Gour Sagar University, a central institution.

A right-wing group, Hindu Jagran Manch, has complained to the university administration to act against the student.

The university said it has ordered an investigation.

“A committee has been formed to investigate this. Along with this, students have been told to keep religious worship at home. The university is for studying,” Vice Chancellor Neelima Gupta said.

The university’s Registrar Santosh Sahgaura told news agency PTI they have got a complaint along with a video clip showing the student in hijab offering namazinside a classroom.

“The five-member committee will submit a report within three days and action will be taken based on this,” Mr Sahgaura said.

The university has no formal dress code for students on campus, but they must attend classes in “basic ethical dressing,” the university’s media officer Vivek Jaiswal told PTI.

The Hindu Jagran Manch’s Sagar unit chief Umesh Saraf alleged the student seen in the video has been attending lectures wearing a hijab for a long time.

“Such religious activities should not be allowed in educational institutions. She has been coming in hijab for long, but she was seen offering namaz inside the classroom on Friday afternoon. This is objectionable as educational institutions are a place for every religion,” Mr Saraf said.

“A complaint has been submitted to the Vice Chancellor and the Registrar,” he said, and referred to the Karnataka High Court’s verdict on March 15 that dismissed petitions seeking to allow wearing hijab inside classrooms.

The hijab is not an essential religious practice, the Karnataka High Court had said as it backed a ban on wearing hijab in classrooms.

The order has been challenged in the Supreme Court by Niba Naaz, a student who was not among the five who had originally petitioned against the hijab ban.

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