If there is any country in the world that is supposed to be the focal point of interfaith and religious tolerance, it should be India, because of its diversity. India is one of the countries with the highest number of religions in the world.
Ironically, it baffles me how the Indian government is currently depriving Muslims of exercising their religious rights. And why must it be Muslims who are forbidden to use ‘hijab’ for female Muslim students in schools? This is indecorous to the highest level for a democratically elected government to take that decision.
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Hijab isn’t optional in Islam, it’s a requirement for the fulfilment of religious obligations for Muslim women. Therefore, forbidding Muslim women from using Hijab is stopping them from observing their five daily prayers.
I vividly remember that before the degradation of “Sheikh Abubakar Mahmud Gumi College” it was the biggest Islamic Theology College in the whole of Kaduna State, where the school graduated numerous and prominent Islamic scholars. The school concurrently ran two programmes both in Western education and Islamic Theology.
But remember, it’s at an Islamic Theology College, where eminent Islamic scholars were imparting knowledge to thousands of aspiring scholars. And most of the teaching staff were foreigners from “Arab countries”. The school was a fertile breeding ground to the Islamic Ulemas, in which the certificate of the school is used as a prerequisite for getting a scholarship to study in some of the best Islamic Universities in the World, such as, “Islamic University of Medina Saudi Arabia”, and “Al-Azhar University Cairo Egypt” etc.
If Sheikh Abubakar Mahmud Gumi College will accommodate Christian students and tolerate their choice of dressing, despite the status of the school Islamically, so why not the embattled “Missionary School in Ilorin Kwara State”? That’s another India in Nigeria that will not allow the female Muslim to wear their hijabs which are innocuous to the existence of the school.
Jabir T. Usman
Sabon Gari Tudun Wada, Kaduna State.