Supreme Court delivers split verdict on Karnataka hijab ban
New Delhi/IBNS: The Supreme Court Thursday delivered a split verdict on the pleas challenging the Karnataka government's imposition of ban on hijab or head scarves (worn by Muslim women) in educational institutions, media reports said.
Dismissing the pleas against the ban, Justice Hemant Gupta said as quoted by NDTV, "There is divergence of opinion."
Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia entertained the petitions and said, "It's ultimately a matter of choice and nothing else. Uppermost in my mind was education of the girl child. I respectfully disagree with my brother's judgement."
Justice Dhulia said the case will be placed before the Chief Justice of India for a three-judge bench hearing.
Earlier, the Karnataka High Court had favoured the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led state government's decision by refusing to lift the ban.
The matter had triggered a political firestorm in the southern state, which will go to polls the next year, with the Muslim community lashing out at the ruling party over the ban.
The opposition Congress had backed the Muslim students with its general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra saying women should wear whatever they want be it "bikini or a "hijab" or a "ghoonghat".