Supreme Court on July 24, 2015 observed a ruling on the PIL filed by SIO regarding the controversy surrounding Islamic dress ‘Hijab’ saying ‘If you appear in an examination without a head scarf your faith will not disappear’.
It seems strange that a little piece of cloth would make for such controversy. Of course, the issue at hand is more than a mere piece of cloth. Like millions of other Muslim women across the globe, we too choose to wear the Hijab. And the concept of the Hijab, contrary to popular opinion, is actually one of the most fundamental aspects of female empowerment.
In seeking a peaceful route to the restoration of the rights of Muslim students to use Hijab as part of faith to be freely practiced as guaranteed by the Indian Constitution. The Students Islamic Organization had earlier challenged the provision of allowing to wear a head scarf for students appearing for AIPMT. But unfortunately, should this be the statement that a law court seemed to reach a painful Statement. Our Constitution declares that India is a secular nation and, it guaranteed freedom of belief, faith, and worship.
Catholic nuns wear veil as a symbol of holiness. In Hindu society, women often cover their head on entering religious places and follow it traditionally as a sign of respect in front of elders. European women of the Middle Ages wore different varieties of veils in the form of hats, wimple and head-scarves. Depictions of Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ show her veiled. Muslim women wear veil – Hijab – which is modest dressing. So, what is this hue and cry about Muslim women’s Hijab? Why is the world making noise?
Islamic dress code is not the problem and banning Hijab is not the solution to control the mischief of those who cheat. For those who cheat, it’s not important that they actually use their dress code as a means of such malpractice. Those who really do such things, might have got many other ideas to put such deeds in action, particularly when such a statement was released by the CJI. However in contrary, all those aspirants who consider their Hijab as mandatory would chose to miss such an amazing opportunity simply because of Painful statement.
Not allowing Hijab can prove to be a barrier in educational progress of the women. Dress code should not be the issue to curb malpractice. In fact, moral degradation is responsible for such actions.
It had also been remarked by the court authorities that faith wouldn’t disappear if the Hijab is taken off for one day. However, life is full of surrendering ‘completely’ before GOD, rather than occasionally. Timely practice isn’t faith. Faith is total submission in all times, be it either in favorable or unfavorable situations. Faith means to practice wholly and completely what we believe rather than disapproving it in certain times.
For Muslim women, Hijab is an obligation that Allah has enjoined on them, which is proven in the Qur’an and the Sunnah, and the Ummah is agreed upon it.
Woman’s liberalization mostly disguises exploitation of her body, degradation of her soul, and deprivation of her honor. Western societies claim to have uplifted women via allowing them to expose their bodies, but on the contrary, this has actually degraded them to mere tools in the hands of pleasure seekers and sex marketers, hidden behind the colorful screen of “art” and “culture.”
Because of the superficiality of the world in which we live, such external appearances are so stressed that the value of the individual counts for almost nothing. It is a myth that women in today’s Indian society are liberated! What kind of freedom can there be when a woman cannot walk down the street without fearing her modesty.
For those of us who wear Hijab, we want to be felt empowered, respected and dignified. I want to be seen for who we. Hijab requires purity of character – to live a principle-centered life based on humility, modesty, honesty, love, compassion and kindness and to elevate oneself with a conscious endeavor.
Therefore, we, object the Apex court ruling since we feel that we, Muslim sisters are being deprived of our honor and, being dutiful citizens of a secular India, we are free to enjoy the right to freedom of religion. We therefore request that our choice must be respected, and as a solution to mischievous malpractices such as cheating in the presence of an invigilator, serious strict checking can be observed before the candidate is allowed to enter the examination hall. Also, the number of invigilators in one room can be taken into consideration.
“A woman modestly dressed is like a pearl in its shell”, a vision of our society that needs to be revived! We hope that some appropriate action is taken where neither any malpractice is put into action, nor is female citizen deprived of her honor.
Ms.Taqiyya, Medical Student, Associated to [Girls’ Islamic Organisation]