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The Indian Herald

The Indian Herald
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March 25, 2009

School expels Muslim boy for keeping beard

A Missionary school in Madhya Pradesh expelled a Muslim student for keeping a beard. The High School student has now approached the Supreme Court demanding justice.

Mohammed Salim, a student of Nirmala Convent Higher Secondary School in Sironj town in Vidisha district, had kept a beard but the principal forced him to leave the school.

She contended that it violated the policy of her school. The counsel of the boy filed a petition in the Madhya Pradesh High Court but it was rejected. The Apex court has now admitted the petition.

Salim's counsel has held that the school can't discriminate among children on the basis of their beliefs and should not interfere with religion. "Beard has a religious symbol in Islam and when a fellow Sikh boy can keep a beard, a Muslim can't be denied the same privilege in a secular country".

The Supreme court has sought information about the school and whether it is a government-aided institute. Salim's lawyer has held that the school's action tantamount to the violation of freedom of religion enshrined in Indian constitution. The Christian missionary run school is a minority educational institute as per the Madhya Pradesh government.

TIH Bureau



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