Saudi Arabia Bans Hijab In Examination Halls Even As Similar Action By Indian Schools Continue To Be Called Discriminatory

Even as some Indian students continue to walk out of exam halls because they are not allowed to wear the hijab, under heavy international scrutiny, Saudi Arabian news reports say that the Saudi government has banned the abaya from exam halls.

The abaya, widely worn by Saudi women, is a loose cloak worn over a figure-concealing dress and includes a scarf that covers the hair, shoulders and neck and often the mouth, similar to the “burqa” common among Indian Muslims. , Pakistan and Bangladesh.

In Saudi and other Islamic countries, however, this cloak is mandatory public clothing for women by law. Among these countries is Iran, which has witnessed massive protests against this mandate since September.

In 2018, young Saudi Prince Mohammed Bin Salman drew international attention when he said that while the dress worn by women in public is “dignified and respectful”, the Abaya is not mandatory.

according to national, An English language newspaper published from Abu Dhabi, the Saudi Education and Training Evaluation Committee recently announced that students would not be allowed to wear Abayas in examination halls.

Photo of Saudi women wearing Abaya.  (Wikicommons)

Photo of Saudi women wearing Abaya. (Wikicommons)

Photo of Saudi women wearing Abaya.  (Wikicommons)

Photo of Saudi women wearing Abaya. (Wikicommons)

The Commission responsible for verifying education and training systems has said that all students must wear the uniform.

In Saudi Arabia there are the cities of Mecca and Medina, the centers of the Islamic faith, where Muslims from all over the world gather for pilgrimage.

This announcement comes at a time when some Muslim organizations in India have termed similar actions by school authorities as Islamophobic.

In April, when the examinations for students of Karnataka’s second pre-university college (PCU), equivalent to class 12, began, the high school students refused to remove their hijab.

Before the exams started, the Karnataka Education Minister BC Nagesh said that hijab would not be accepted in the exams. He said that everyone should follow the High Court (HC) verdict.

said two students who had taken the walkout to the Karnataka High Court, seeking special privileges for Muslim women to wear the hijab on educational campuses, arguing that “the hijab is an essential religious practice in Islam.”

The HC, after several hearings, rejected the pleas and upheld the right of the state government to make all students wear the same uniform, saying that the petitioners could not establish the hijab as an essential religious practice of Islam.

At least two other applicants did not appear for the examinations at all in defiance of the judge’s ruling.

Islamists, communists and self-identified “liberal” commentators were criticized on social media at the time (see some posts here, here and here) because the institute did not allow students to take exams in hijab.

In October, a similar controversy, but on a smaller scale, where female students began to protest against the university management saying that they were discriminated against because of their religion, when a professor asked them to remove their hijab.

The teacher and principal in their defense said that the institute was only testing bluetooth devices to prevent cheating in the exam.

A student, incidentally, from the Muslim community, later told the media that his classmates had turned the simple issue of examination-related verification into a common problem.

He said: “They started mentioning religion and all that. I wonder where their religion goes when they go to a function? How do they remember their religion only in exams? Girls like this make people question religion itself.”

It can be his statement in the video.

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