A controversy has erupted in a government school in Bihar after its principal instructed some students to come in uniform instead of hijabs and burqas.
The education department has instituted a probe.
The issue was brewing for almost a month at the girls' school at Charuawan village in Shekhopursarai block of Sheikhpura district but spilled out in the open after the families of the girls started protesting the school’s order for infringing on their religious practices.
“We recently noticed that some girls have started coming to school in burqas and hijabs. I asked them on November 6 to stop it and come in their uniform as no other clothes were allowed. It is a rule for government schools. The government provides them money for school uniform,” principal Satyendra Kumar Chaudhary said.
Chaudhary said that since then around a dozen villagers had started pressuring him to allow the children to wear burqas, hijabs and naqabs.
“I told them that I would seek guidance from the district education officer (DEO). I have written to him and also sought protection for the teachers and the school,” the principal added.
However, the students did not stop wearing burqas and hijabs, which led to daily objections by the teachers.
“All the teachers, including principal sir, started asking us to come in uniform, but we have been wearing this since taking admission in Class XI a few months ago,” said Salma, a student.
The matters worsened on Wednesday (November 29) when several villagers arrived at the school, met the principal and insisted that the girls be allowed to attend classes in hijabs.