A day after students of the University College here went on a protest against the college allowing Muslim girls to wear hijab in classrooms, Mangalore University said on Friday that students in hijab will be counselled and convinced of the need to return to classes without scarf.
Speaking to media persons after holding a meeting in the college, which is owned and managed by the university, Vice-Chancellor P.S. Yadapadithaya said that the university will not allow students to wear hijab in all its six constituent colleges that are owned and managed by the university.
“If students refuse to attend classes even after counselling, the college will issue them transfer certificates if they wish to join any other institution”P.S. Yadapadithaya,Vice-Chancellor, Mangalore University
It is as per the recent verdict of the High Court of Karnataka and the subsequent decision taken by the Syndicate, which is the highest decision-making body of the university, on May 16. The Syndicate has decided that students should not be allowed to wear scarf in classrooms of the university’s constituent colleges.
The verdict of the court is binding on the university and its constituent colleges, the Vice-Chancellor said.
“We can bend or stretch the law. But we cannot break it,” he said and added that if the students refused to attend classes even after counselling, the college will issue them transfer certificates if they wished to join any other institution.
The Vice-Chancellor said that hijab will not be allowed in library and canteen as well. Students will, after entering the college premises, have to remove the head scarf in the rest room meant for them.
Asked about reports that it was some teachers of the college who asked the girls to attend classes in hijab, the Vice-Chancellor said that the university will take disciplinary action against such teachers if there are any evidence to it.
To a question why the Syndicate, headed by the Vice-Chancellor, took such a long time to take a decision in the matter, Prof. Yadapadithaya said that when the court announced its final verdict, the odd-semester examinations were on the cards.
Later, there was holiday for colleges. The decision was taken a day before the start of offline classes on May 17. But the university intimated the verdict of the court well in advance to all its constituent and affiliated colleges, he said.
According to principal of the college Anusuya Rai, of the 44 Muslim girls in the college, 10 attended classes on Friday after removing their head scarf.
The meeting was attended among others by Member of Legislative Assembly from Mangaluru City South D. Vedavyas Kamath, who is also the chairman of the college development committee, the university officials, including the Registrar (administration), faculty members and students.
Meanwhile, president of the college union Vinyasa Acharya resigned on Friday following the developments.
Ghousia, a degree student, told reporters on Thursday that she and other Muslim girls were allowed to wear hijab in classrooms and also to write examinations wearing hijab in April. The problem started after the resumption of classes on May 17 when they were barred from entering classrooms in hijab. She said that girls in hijab were sent out of the library and college campus on Thursday.