The Karnataka high court on 15 March 2022 dismissed petitions filed by a section of Muslim students from the Government Pre-University Girls College in Udupi, seeking permission to wear Hijab inside the classroom.

The following were the key observations by court

  • Wearing of headscarves (hijab) by Muslim women does not form a part of essential religious practices in Islamic faith. Article 25 :Freedom of conscience and free profession, practice and propagation of religion doesnot provide the right to wear hijab inside classrooms.
  • Karnataka Education Act, 1983 prescribes uniforms for students attending the pre university schools and colleges. Under the Act, Government issued an order banning wearing of hijab inside the classrooms. High Court of Karnataka upheld the order issued by the Government of Karnataka stating that school uniform is only a “reasonable restriction” that the students can adhere to.
  • The court dismissed the pleas by a section of Muslim students, saying that the state government had the right to prescribe uniforms for students.
  • The petitions were filed by nine Muslim girl students studying in two government pre-university colleges in Udupi district.
  • Karnataka High Court observed that school uniforms doesnot violate the fundamental right to speech and expression guaranteed by Article 19 (1) or the right to privacy Article 21 of the Constitution of India.

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