Religious leaders in Kolkata, who transcend religious denominations and work closely together on community harmony issues, have sought West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s “intervention” in the hijab issue.
The Dharmik Jana Morcha, a platform that has been in existence for more than two years and which brings together more than 20 “dharm gurus” from different communities, namely Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and Buddhists, has speaks out in unison against restrictions on the wearing of the hijab by Muslim girls in educational institutions in Karnataka, alleging that it violates religious freedom.
“This is a matter of national importance. The chief minister has an important place in the national scenario, and the question is associated with the feelings of the people. It should present its position on this subject. On behalf of Morcha, as well as on behalf of our organization, we will write to him,” said Maulana Abdur Rafique, State Chairperson, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind. Deccan Herald. The floating of the Morcha was facilitated by the Jamaat.
Read | “The personal choice of the hijab, not against the Constitution, does not bother anyone in class”
Unlike a few other protesting Muslim organizations, Rafique said the Jamaat favors a resolution through intellectual discussions. “We believe polarization is not good for Hindus and Muslims, and for the country. It is attempted. We are not protesting and believe that an intellectual discussion is needed on why Muslim girls and women wear the hijab,” Rafique said. Muslims who represent political parties have their limitations and have limited knowledge about Islam, he added.
Father Sanjiv Das, who represents a church in Barrackpore, felt that a problem is being created out of something that is more cultural, rather than a political or religious issue. “It’s stupidity to interfere,” he said. Sanijv claims that Christians are also being persecuted in the south and north and churches are being attacked. “I have records,” he said. He believes Christians in Karnataka should also speak out on the issue of hijab and Christian lawmakers should unite to raise the issue of their community’s prosecution.
Arun Jyuti Bhikku, a Buddhist Morcha representative, said Karnataka’s education minister should reconsider the hijab instructions. “I think Muslim girls will be deprived,” he said, adding that he wore religious robes after receiving “diksha” as a fourth-grade student. “Tomorrow, I might be told not to wear this. It could be pagdi next. The government should reconsider,” he added.
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