An Indonesian State Islamic University has banned female students from wearing full-face veils quoting that the move has been taken fearing the spread of radical philosophy on campus.
The Indonesian University has been under severe criticism from many Muslim Groups and activists after this decision was announced on Wednesday.
Indonesia is the largest Muslim population nation of the world, the majority of the people of Indonesia practices moderate kind of Islam.
Recently the country has been witnessing more reserved kind of interpretations of the religion, which are seen as a threat by many against the country’s previously long built reputation of being religiously tolerant and diverse.
The State Islamic University (UIN) in the city of Yogyakarta, on the island of Java, said that it has forty-one female students enrolled who wear full veil or burqa. The university informed that these students would be given proper counselling sessions and would be asked to take off the veils if they want to graduate.
The Islamic Defenders Front—a conservative group that runs campaigns against the activities it considers un-Islamic said in one of its statement that the new policy of the university makes no sense and is in clear conflict with the nation’s efforts of preserving the diversity.
A women’s rights activist—Lathiefah Widuri Retyaningtyas said that wearing full-face veils is a choice and no one could interfere with the students’ choice and freedom.
The University Rector—Yudian Wahyudi said that female students who wear burqa disrupt the teaching process. He added that we want to put moderate Islam forward and said that the new policy is a preventive measure to save the students.
He further said that the students would be allowed to continue covering their heads by using headscarves.