Amid the ongoing hijab row, a plea has been moved in the Supreme Court seeking direction to the Union government and states to implement a "common dress code" in registered and state recognised educational institutions in order to secure social equality, assure dignity and promote national integration.
The plea filed by Nikhil Upadhyay, a resident of Ghaziabad, said that the role of universal education for strengthening the social fabric of democracy through provisions of equal opportunity to all has been accepted since the inception of our republic.
"Thus, a common dress code is not only necessary to enhance the values of equality, social justice, democracy and to create a just and humane society but also essential to curtail the biggest menace of casteism, communalism, classism radicalism, separatism, and fundamentalism," said the plea filed through advocate Ashwani Kumar Dubey.
The plea argued that in the US, the UK, France, Singapore and China, all schools and colleges adhere to a common dress code despite frequent challenges to the constitutionality of dress guidelines.
It further added that most court rulings support the common dress code because the use of common dress code has many benefits.
"Over 1,000 schools in Texas were studied to look at the impact of uniforms in the classroom and researchers noted that there were significantly higher positive perceptions about the entire community when compared to those who wear whatever they want."
The plea contended that dress codes have the ability to make students stop fidgeting, stop thinking about why their friend is getting more attention for their looks instead of them, and create a carefree attitude.
"A dress code brings discipline and discipline brings order, peace, and a sense of leadership. Dress code brings uniformity which is interlinked to order and peace."
The Supreme Court on Friday, February 11 refused to entertain a plea seeking urgent hearing on petitions challenging the Karnataka High Court interim order in the hijab matter.
The top court asked the petitioners' counsel, which included Muslim girl students, to think whether it is proper to bring the issue at the national level.