DPS Srinagar Apologises After Asking Woman Teacher To Choose Between Her Job And Abaya

20/06/2016 10:53 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:27 AM IST
Yawar Nazir via Getty Images
SRINAGAR, KASHMIR, INDIA - FEBRUARY 18: Kashmiri Muslim girls wearing abaya, a long tunic and veil, the standard ladies' Muslim fashion to wear, walks on a road on February 18, 2014 in Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian-administered Kashmir, India. Kashmir is known as the 'Paradise on Earth' and has for centuries captured the imagination of many writers, poets and film makers and is integral to the tourist trade. Kashmir has been a contested land between nuclear neighbors India and Pakistan since 1947, the year both the countries attained freedom from the British rule. (Photo by Yawar Nazir/Getty Images)

Three days after protests hit Srinagar's Delhi Public School (DPS) following a complaint by a woman teacher that she was asked to choose between her job and 'abaya', the management of the school tendered an "apology... for hurting the sentiments of people."

The teacher had resigned and the matter was raised in the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly by Independent MLA Engineer Rashid during the Zero Hour, the Indian Express reported.

Students of the school staged a protest on Friday, the government has called it a “serious issue” and said Jammu and Kashmir was “not France”.

“The principal was absent for two months. After she returned, she sent a message that I should not wear abaya. She categorically told me that Islamic dress is not allowed on the school premises. The (school) chairman later also told me that I should not wear it inside the school. When I refused, I was told that I have to leave the job," the 29-year-old teacher told Express.

However, on Sunday the school, in a one-line statement, tendered an apology after the drastic step triggered protests from students.

"Delhi Public School Srinagar management apologies for unintentionally hurting the sentiments of people," a spokesman of the school told DNA.

France has banned Muslims from wearing the full-face veil -- the niqab. The teacher was reportedly asked by principal Kusum Warikoo to “choose between her job and the dress code." The abaya is traditionally a black, loose gown that observant Muslim women wear in public.

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