Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Indonesia: Islamic university bans burqas on campus

(Yogyakarta) The Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University in Yogyakarta has barred its female students from wearing burkas during any campus activity.

University Rector Yudian Wahyudi said there would be seven warnings and counselling sessions before the university expelled any female students who insisted on wearing burkas. Yudian explained the University had formed a counselling team to nurture the 41 burka-wearing female students. He explained these students would be dismissed should they refuse to cooperate with campus policies after participating in seven counselling sessions.

He also added the  university is based on moderate Islamic views, These viewpoints on Islam acknowledge Indonesia’s 1945 Constitution, the Pancasila state ideology, and the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia. However this hasn't gone down well, with those who find offence everywhere they look. The Islamic Defenders Front, a conservative group that campaigns against activities it deems un-Islamic, said in a statement the policy “did not make sense” and was in conflict with the country’s efforts to preserve diversity. A women’s rights activist decried what she described as a limitation on the freedom of women to wear what they want.
“Using full-face veils is a choice and we cannot interfere in their choice and their freedom,”
In reply Yudian Wahyudi said radicalization, as exemplified by the burqas, undermined learning.
“Female students wearing the burqa, and radical groups, they are disturbing the teaching process, We are putting moderate Islam forward,” he said, adding that the policy was a “preventive action to save the students”.
Students would be allowed to continue using regular headscarves that do not cover the face,