A Muslim educational society in Kozhikode has banned dresses that cover the face for girls in educational institutions under its control. However, the circular issued by the body does not specifically mention burqas. The circular issued by MES state president Dr Fazal Gafoor states that the order will come into force for the 2019-2020 academic year.
The circular has also asked all heads of institutions under the MES to mention it in the calendar that it is a law governed institution. The circular cites the Kerala High Court judgement that said that the management had the fundamental right to establish and manage an educational institution.
Dr Gafoor told Times of India that the decision was not based on Sri Lanka's ban on burqas and that "MES knows what is good and bad for the community."
"MES that aims at the social and cultural progress of the Muslim community insists that the students, even while maintaining high standards in curricular and extra-curricular activities, do follow certain decorum in the dress code too. We should discourage all undesirable practices on the campuses," the April 19 circular said further adding, "Under these circumstances, dresses that are unacceptable to the mainstream society - whether they are modern or religious - cannot be promoted."
The circular added that heads of institutions and office-bearers of the local management must be vigilant in this regard.
MES, a non-governmental organisation established by Dr PA Abdul Gafoor in 1964 has 150 educational institutions under its control. Out of those institutions, 10 are professional colleges, 18 are arts and science colleges, 12 are higher secondary schools and 36 are CBSE schools.