Hijab not an issue in Bihar, people respect each other’s religious sentiments: Nitish Kumar

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar addresses a public rally during state-wide 'Samaj Sudhar Yatra' (social reform tour), in Motihari on 22 December 2021ANI

Chief minister of India’s state of Bihar, Nitish Kumar, has played down the Hijab controversy which has been raging in the country and said that in Bihar this is not an issue as people respect each other’s religious sentiments.

Talking with the media, Kumar said, “In Bihar schools, children wear the same type of dress... We respect each other’s religious sentiments.”

The chief minister also said that the people of the state does not pay attention to such things as Bihar does not interfere with the way of practising one’s religion or culture.

“We do not interfere in their way of practising religion or culture. That’s why we should not pay attention to such things,” he said.

Earlier, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath said that a proper dress code should be followed in schools, adding that he never asked the public or workers in UP to wear saffron, for what they wear is their personal choice.

He had also said that one’s personal belief is separate, “but when one talks about institutions, then one has to accept the rules there. In a national context, the Constitution should be followed.”

The Hijab protests in Karnataka began in January this year when some students of Government Girls PU college in the Udupi district of the state alleged that they had been barred from attending classes. During the protests, some students claimed they were denied entry into the college for wearing hijab.

Following this incident, students of different colleges arrived at Shanteshwar Education Trust in Vijayapura wearing saffron stoles. The situation was the same in several colleges in the Udupi district.

The pre-University education board had released a circular stating that students can wear only the uniform approved by the school administration and no other religious practices will be allowed in colleges.

Various petitions challenging the ban on headscarves in educational institutes have been moved to Karnataka High Court.