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Universities and institutions in Karnataka will be closed until February 16th

As protests for and against the hijab grew more violent in some areas of Karnataka, the state government issued a three-day holiday for all high schools and institutions in the state beginning February 9.

Universities and institutions in Karnataka will be closed until February 16th
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The Karnataka government stated on Friday that the holiday declared for universities under the Department of Higher Education and colleges under the Department of Collegiate and Technical Education (DCTE) in the wake of the Hijab issue has been extended until February 16.

Exams, on the other hand, will be held as scheduled, and online classes will be held, according to state Higher Education Minister C N Ashwath Narayan.

Both Primary and Secondary Education Minister B C Nagesh and Home Minister Araga Jnanendra had stated earlier in the day that a decision on reopening Pre-University and Degree (further education) Colleges would be made on February 14.

The DCTE had declared the closure of institutions from February 9 to February 11, Narayan stated, but it has now been extended as a precautionary measure due to the Hijab row.

He stated that the closure applies to government, aided, and unaided degree, diploma, and engineering institutes.

The administration said on Thursday that high school pupils up to class 10 will resume classes on February 14, followed by Pre-University and Degree Colleges.

The Karnataka High Court had previously ordered the state government to reopen educational institutions and barred all students from wearing saffron shawls, scarves, Hijab, or any religious flag in the classroom, awaiting the outcome of all applications relating to the Hijab issue.

As protests for and against the hijab grew more violent in some areas of Karnataka, the state government issued a three-day holiday for all high schools and institutions in the state beginning February 9.

The state government had issued a number of directives to district administrations earlier in the day, ahead of the reopening of schools, aiming at keeping peace and ensuring that the High Court ruling was not breached.

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai convened a video conferencing meeting with various Ministers, Deputy Commissioners (DCs), Superintendents of Police (SPs), Deputy Director of Public Instruction (DDPIs), and CEOs of Zilla Panchayats from around the state to assess the situation on the ground.

"From Monday, high school classes up to class 10 will resume across the state, directions have been issued to see to it that no untoward incident takes place. In sensitive areas, DCs and SPs have to visit campuses and instruct the authorities and teaching staff there to see to it that no untoward incidents take place," Jnanendra told reporters after the meeting.

DCs, SPs and DDPIs have been asked to keep constant contact with principals, teachers, management of educational institutions and parents.

"Action should be taken against the guilty, peace meetings should be held and the High Court order should be followed literally. Authorities should not budge to any pressure and even small incidents should be considered seriously," he added.

Meanwhile, a police flag march was held in Udupi, ahead of the reopening of schools on Monday.

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