Muslim side turns around in hijab dispute, now argument for women's rights not Quran
Muslim side turns around in hijab dispute, now argument for women's rights not Quran

New Delhi: The hearing in the Hijab ban case is going on in the Supreme Court. Now on Monday, the Muslim side changed its tone and said that the need for a hijab should be seen as a woman's right instead of the Quran. On this, the Supreme Court has also sought a reply from the advocate on the changing arguments. Earlier, the Muslim side had described the hijab as essential in Islam.

On Monday, senior advocates Yusuf H Muchhala and Salman Khurshid, appearing for the Muslim side, said the court was not proficient in Arabic and hence could not interpret the Quran. He argued that the hijab should be seen by the court as a woman's right to privacy, respect and identity. A bench of Justices Hemant Gupta and Sudhanshu Dhulia heard the matter. The hearing on the hijab case will continue on Wednesday.

The same side had earlier said that the hijab is necessary for Islam. Now advocate Muchhala, who does not want to investigate the need for hijab in Islam, said, "Privacy is a right over body and mind. Right to conscience and right to religion are complementary. So when a Muslim woman wants to wear the hijab, it is the fabric of choice to protect her honor and privacy as well as make her feel empowered.'' Khurshid also says that wearing the hijab of a Muslim woman can be a matter of religious belief, a voice of conscience, culture as a necessity or a personal consideration to preserve identity, honour and privacy. ''In a culturally diverse country like India, there is a need to respect cultural practices. Muslim women do not want to refuse the rule of wearing uniforms. They want to wear an extra piece of cloth in the form of a scarf in honor of their cultural need and personal preference. The Supreme Court has demanded an explanation from Muchala about his different points.'' According to the court, ''First, you have emphasized that the hijab is a religious right. You are now arguing that the court should not interpret the Qur'an to decide whether the hijab is essential to religion. You are arguing that the matter should be referred to a nine-judge bench to find out whether this work is necessary or not.''

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