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Karnataka hijab ban: Girls move SC for permission to take exam in headscarf

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The Supreme Court on Wednesday said it will “take a call” on listing a plea to allow girls to sit for exams in Karnataka government schools while wearing the hijab.

Following the apex court’s split verdict on the issue of the ban on wearing the headscarf, girls in hijab are not being permitted to take the exams scheduled to begin from March 9, a bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud was told. “They are wearing headscarf. If they are wearing headscarf they are not allowed inside the examination hall. Only on that limited aspect, the court may consider listing it on Monday or Friday,” said lawyer Shadan Farasat.

He told the bench, also comprising Justice P S Narasimha, that a few girls have moved to private institutions because of the prohibition on wearing hijabs but have to take their exams in government institutions. They risk losing another year if not permitted, he said.

“I will take a call,” the CJI said.

Due to the split verdict, the high court’s judgement still holds the field.

The split verdict on October 13 last year held off a permanent resolution to the hijab row as both judges suggested placing the matter before a larger bench for adjudication.

The court had said last month that it would consider setting up a three-judge bench to adjudicate the case related to the ban on wearing of hijabs in Karnataka government schools.

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