Amid the ongoing hijab controversy, Kerala governor Arif Mohammad Khan on Saturday said that the hijab is not an essential part of Islam in the manner say a turban was to the Sikh religion and that controversy around it was part of a “conspiracy” to prevent Muslim girls from progressing.
The governor also urged students to return to their classrooms and carry forward their studies.
Speaking to ANI over the phone, Khan said, “Hijab is not a part of Islam. Hijab is mentioned seven times in Quran, but it is not in connection with the women’s dress code. It is a conspiracy to stop the Muslim girls from progressing. The hijab controversy is a conspiracy to stop the education of Muslim girls. The Muslim girls are studying now and achieving what they want. I would suggest the students to return to their classrooms and study.”
Terming as “absurd” the argument about allowing Sikhs to wear turbans in schools while Muslim schoolgirls were not allowed to don the hijab, the Governor said that turban is an essential part of the Sikh religion, however, the same is not the case with hijab in Islam.
“The argument that wearing a turban is allowed to the Sikhs but the Muslim girls are not being allowed to wear hijab inside the classroom is absurd. Turban is an essential part of the Sikh religion, however, the hijab is not mentioned as an essential part of Islam in the Quran,” he said.
“Hijab has no connection with Islam. The Hijab word is used seven times in Quran but it is not in connection with the dress code of women. It is in connection with ‘purdah’ which means that when you speak, you should have ‘purdah’ in between,” Khan added.
Emphasising that women were free to wear anything that they wanted, Khan said that they would have to comply with rules and regulations of the institution they are working or studying in.
“You are free to wear anything that you want. But when you are associated with an institution, you have to adhere to the rules and regulations and the dress code of the institution,” he said.