(BELLEVUE, WA, 2/18/2022) — On Sunday, February 20th, the Washington Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-WA) will join local and national activists for a protest against the recent hijab bans in India.

The Coalition of Seattle Indian-Americans, along with the Indian-American Muslim Council are leading the protest, which will take place at Bellevue Crossroads Park at 11:00 AM this Sunday. In recent weeks, Muslim women in Karnataka who wear the hijab have been kicked out of classrooms and prevented from entering universities, and face a large upswing in harassment and threats of violence.

SEE: Hijab protests spread in India as girls refuse to be told what not to wear https://www.cnn.com/2022/02/10/india/hijab-karnataka-india-protest-intl-hnk/index.html

WHAT: Protest Against the Hijab Ban in India
WHEN: Sunday, February 20th, 2022, 11:00 AM PST
WHERE: 16140 NE 8th St, Bellevue, WA 98008

CAIR-WA Executive Director Imraan Siddiqi, 480-415-4652, imraansiddiqi@cair.com
CAIR-WA Sr. Communications and Marketing Strategist Katharine Walker, kwalker@cair.com

In a statement, CAIR-WA Executive Director Imraan Siddiqi said:

“As an Indian-American Muslim, it is truly disheartening to see just how far the nation of my ancestry has devolved in recent years. India’s Muslims and other minority groups are continuing to be marginalized by the extremist, ultra-nationalistic government – and this hijab ban is just the latest step in the normalization of this fascistic behavior. It is vital that all communities of conscience stand up against systemic discrimination.”

From the organizers, Coalition of Seattle Indian-Americans: “Ban on hijab in classrooms by BJP govt in Karnataka is a direct attack on right to equality, right to education and right to practice religion of not only Muslims but all marginalized communities in India like OBCs, Dalits, and Adivasis. Although this is a continuation of the direction taken by previous governments, it is a much more calculated brutal violent apartheid action in enabling the larger RSS goal of turning India into a Hindu Rashtra ( Hindu Nation) using concepts like Uniform Civil Code which is formulated as per dominant caste Hindu Brahminical tenets and deny the rights of others like Muslim girls’ right to wear hijab to schools and colleges. Not just that – from severe cuts in education spending, cutting down scholarships of Dalit students in higher education, increasing fees for public universities, revising textbooks to erase India’s pluralist history to dismantling affirmative action policies one by one, the current regime has tried to put up insurmountable social and economic barriers in the path of the marginalized communities and to disenfranchise them of their rights guaranteed by the current Indian constitution and keep them in servitude forever while favoring Brahmins and their allied castes. Hence this Hijab ban is the tip of the iceberg and a dangerous threat to Indian democracy and needs to be condemned and revoked as soon as possible.”

CAIR’s mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims. La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, proteger las libertades civiles, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.

– END –