India’s Hijab Ban: Limits of the Democratic Constitutional Order

In March of 2022, the Indian High Court in Karnataka upheld the government ban on Hijab in schools as constitutional. The Hijab ban, petitioned (largely) by Indian female students, was implemented as a government order to ban religious clothing in schools (targeting Muslim minorities in particular). In response, Muslim women passionately defended their presupposed constitutional and religious right to wear the Hijab (under Article 25 of the Indian Constitution), culminating in a long-form legal and social onslaught of petitions and protests. Yet, until the Supreme Court rules on the issue, the High Court’s ruling will remain the definitive answer to the question: Was the Hijab ban unconstitutional? In March of 2022, the Indian High Court in Karnataka upheld the government ban on Hijab in schools as constitutional. The Hijab ban, petitioned (largely) by Indian female students, was implemented as a government order to ban religious clothing in schools (targeting Muslim minorities in particular). In response, Muslim women passionately defended their presupposed constitutional and religious right to wear the Hijab (under Article 25 of the Indian Constitution), culminating in a long-form legal and social onslaught of petitions and protests. Yet, until the Supreme Court rules on the issue, the High Court’s ruling will remain the definitive answer to the question: Was the Hijab ban unconstitutional?  Continue reading India’s Hijab Ban: Limits of the Democratic Constitutional Order

Muslim Women vs. the Hindutva Project

eveloped in light of various Dharm Sansads (religious conferences) organized in several Indian cities by Hindu religious leaders, who called upon Hindus to arm themselves for the wholesale massacre of Muslims. This is no recent development: the agenda for genocide has been gaining traction for a long time now. Most people mistakenly believe Hindu nationalism is the sole proprietorship of India’s ruling party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and its ideological parent Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). In reality, however, Islamophobia is embedded within India’s dominant political lingua franca, including the nation’s opposition parties. Hence, it is not surprising that in the latest attack against Muslims (regarding hijab and niqab in colleges and educational institutions) not a single united front of support has emerged from the majority community.  Continue reading Muslim Women vs. the Hindutva Project

Why the Likes of Naseeruddin Shah Are in the Wrong

Muslims under the rule of the Indian state are perhaps facing their worst crisis in the seven decades of the country’s existence. India has not only failed to put an end to massacres of it’s religious minorities, it has doubled down and democratically awarded a pogromist with the most powerful office in the land. Since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took power in the summer of 2014, dozens of Muslim men have been lynched. Laws and policies that threaten the statehood of Muslims have been enacted (National Register of Citizens and Citizenship Amendment Act). In addition, abolition of article 35 (a) has enabled settler-colonialism in the Muslim-majority Kashmir, part of a UN-recognized disputed region. Continue reading Why the Likes of Naseeruddin Shah Are in the Wrong

Will ‘Hindutva’ Only Yield Oppression and Genocide?

India has witnessed another two  murders of Muslim men in a week. Asif Khan, a gym trainer from India’s Haryana state was lynched by a Hindutva mob while returning home after buying medicine. A week later, 17-year-old Mohammad Faisal died in police custody, sustaining heavy injuries after he was arrested for allegedly violating coronavirus restrictions. The incident took place while he was selling vegetables outside his home in the Uttar Pradesh district. These men are some of the hundreds of innocent men lynched or burned to death by a Hindu mob. As a victim of this hate, Faisal is the face of Hindutva state violence on Muslims. These killings have become normalized in a highly radicalized society, which often hails the murderers as “heroes.” [1] Continue reading Will ‘Hindutva’ Only Yield Oppression and Genocide?