Hijab ban in India violates religious freedom, US

The US Agency for International Religious Freedom says freedom of religion includes freedom of choice.

In a Twitter message, the ambassador for international religious freedom said that the authorities in the Indian state of Karnataka should not allow religious dress. The statement added that the ban on hijab in schools was a violation of religious freedom.

It is to be noted that the ruling party of extremist Hindus led by Modi government in India has made life difficult for Muslims, a shocking example of which came to light in the state of Karnataka on Tuesday.

The video shows a group of Hindu extremist students wearing saffron shawls harassing a burqa-clad student. Talking to local media, Miskan Khan, a Muslim student who was harassed, said that similar incidents had taken place with five other women.

Demonstrations against the incident took place in several cities of India and due to the tense situation, the state government had to close educational institutions for three days.

In the Indian state of Karnataka, for the past one and a half months, there has been a dispute between the students and the administration over hijab in several colleges and the matter is now in the High Court. The Karnataka High Court is hearing petitions filed by five female students after the two petitions were stopped after they were barred from wearing the hijab.

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Since last month, several female students have been unable to attend classes for several weeks due to a crackdown on hijab by the government pre-university administration.

Hindu extremists continue to harass Muslim students in several Indian states, including Karnataka, against which Muslims are protesting.

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