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By Nithin Sridhar
The Supreme Court has decided not to allow students appearing for the re-test of All India Pre-Medical Test (AIPMT) to wear hijab (Muslim head scarf) during examination.
A bench led by Chief Justice H L Dattu was hearing a petition by Students Islamic Organization (SIO) of India requesting the SC to allow Muslim aspirants appearing for the AIPMT re-test to wear hijab, after CBSE prohibited the candidates appearing for AIPMT from wearing hair pins, head bands, scarves, belts, caps, and full-sleeve clothes according to a report in The Hindu.
The SIO had petitioned saying that the CBSE directions will prevent Muslim students from adhering to their religious principles. Senior advocate Sanjay Hegde who appeared for the organization submitted in the court that the head scarf is essential to Islamic religious practice and the students are supposed to wear it.
Responding to this, the Chief Justice said: “Faith is not connected to the clothes you wear. For three hours, you adhere to the rules (of CBSE) when you write the exams. Do this for the sake of the exams, which has been already re-scheduled. The court cannot be moved for such small issues,” according to the report.
This decision of the SC upholding CBSE directive must be seen in the background of the AIPMT examination and why it was ordered to be re-conducted.
Major Fraud in AIPMT examinations
In May, Haryana Police arrested a gang of four people who were involved in leaking AIPMT question papers. The gang included two dental surgeons and one MBBS student and one other person.
The gang used mobile phones, bluetooth devices, shirts, and bras fitted with chips and connected to earpieces to leak answers to the students. They had allegedly taken 15-20 Lakhs from many students to supply them with answers.
They had given a few students specially configured mobile phones and shared the answers through Whatsapp. A few other students were provided with sim-cards fitted vests and Bluetooth-enabled earpieces and answers to them were given through phone calls.
This resulted in the Supreme Court asking the CBSE to conduct a fresh AIPMT examination. Therefore, to prevent frauds through use of technology and other means in this fresh AIPMT examination, the CBSE laid strict guidelines prohibiting wearing full sleeve shirts, caps, scarfs or headbands.
The Islamic viewpoint
Hijab is an Islamic head covering that covers the head and the neck, but leaves the face exposed. Hijab is different from other Islamic head coverings like niqab that covers even the face, exposing only the eyes and burqa that covers whole body from head to toe including the eyes, which are covered through a mesh.
The traditional Islamic scholars and ulemas hold that head covering is mandatory for Islamic women. They argue that it is mandated in Quran itself that women should cover their heads.
Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi in “Hijab, The Muslim Womens Dress, Islamic or Cultural?” says: “The requirement of hijab is a Qur’anic command. The basic requirement is that a Muslim woman should cover her head and bosom with a khimar (a head covering), and her body with a jilbab (a loose over-garment). Of course, she can leave her face and hands open”
He further quotes Quran 24:30–31, which says: “Say to the believing women that: they should cast down their glances and guard their private parts and not display their beauty except what is apparent, and they should place their khumur over their bosoms.”
Explaining the verse, Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi says that “Khumur” refers to a piece of cloth that covers the head. He further adds that: “According to the commentators of the Qur’an, the women of Medina in the pre-Islamic era used to put their khumur over the head with the two ends tucked behind and tied at the back of the neck, in the process exposing their ears and neck. By saying, “place the khumur over the bosoms,” Almighty Allah ordered the women to let the two ends of their headgear extend onto their bosoms so that they conceal their ears, the neck, and the upper part of the bosom also.” Therefore, according to him, hijab, or head covering, is mandatory in Islam.
But, Ibrahim B. Syed, President of Islamic Research Foundation International, believes that hijab is not mandatory. He points out that, hijab as a terminology is not found in Quran or Hadith in the context of dress code.
Regarding the Quranic verse, he quotes Muhammad Asad, a well-known translator and commentator on Quran as saying: “The noun khimar (of which Khumur is the plural) denotes the head-covering customarily used by Arabian women before and after the advent of Islam. According to most of the classical commentators, it was worn in pre-Islamic times more or less as an ornament and was let down loosely over the wearer’s back; and since, in accordance with the fashion prevalent at the time, the upper part of a woman’s tunic had a wide opening in the front, her breasts were left bare. Hence the injunction to cover the bosom by means of a khimar (a term familiar to the contemporaries of the Prophet) does not necessarily relate to the use of a khimar as such but is, rather, meant to make it clear that a woman’s breasts are not included in the concept of “what may decently be apparent” of her body and should not, therefore, be displayed.”
Therefore, Ibrahim B. Syed argues that the said verse in Quran speaks about covering of bosom and does not specifically mandate women to wear any head covering.
Hence, there is a lack of consensus within the Islamic community worldwide regarding hijab being mandatory or optional. Though most traditional maulvis and ulemas do consider hijab as mandatory, many Islamic scholars differ with this view.
The Supreme Court’s viewpoint
India is a secular state having people of various religions and faiths. The AIPMT exams faced huge irregularities and frauds due to which the Supreme Court was forced to order a re-examination.
The CBSE placed serious restrictions regarding dress codes because it was found that students had cheated using modified vests and other such things. In order to avoid any kind of cheating, be it by using sim-cards or paper chits, the CBSE prohibited any kind of head covering, head bands, belts, etc.
If the court makes an exception to one community, then another community will ask for the same exception. This would pave way for students violating the dress codes under the pretext of religious obligation and it would become impossible for the examiners to verify the veracity of such claims and prevent any fraud.
It is for this reason, the Supreme Court said: “There were serious problems and we ordered for re-conducting the exam. Now the exam has to be held properly. What if everyone wears a scarf or something else and claims it to be a religious practice? Can an examiner start inquiring into everybody’s faith?” as quoted in The Indian Express.
The court further added that: “One petition is filed saying I should be allowed to wear a cap. Another petition is filed that I should be allowed to wear a kurta since it is my religious practice. Merely because you are wearing something different, should we be allowing such a prayer?”
Therefore, considering the facts that: one, there is no consensus among Islamic scholars themselves regarding hijab; two, it would be ethically wrong if one specific community candidates are shown favor regarding their religious expression in terms of dress and other communities’ candidates are denied the same favor; three, it will be practically impossible to check frauds or cheating if the dress-codes are not imposed uniformly; four, the whole purpose of conducting fresh AIPMT examination will be defeated, if no proper measures are taken to prevent cheating; five, India being a secular state, its administrative affairs should be kept neutral and above any religious considerations; and six, as the SC points out, this is a simple issue, a matter of three hours, and hence there will not be any violation of religion (especially because there is no consensus on the issue of hijab) and students can wear hijab after finishing the exams; the Supreme Court has taken a mature and proper decision by refusing to allow wearing hijab during the AIPMT examinations.
Divorce is a hard fact in someone's life because it can affect all aspects of life like social, economic, and living status. Conditions become tougher if you have children. Recovering from divorce is also a painful process but good thing is that it is possible to get through it and place better in terms of both finances and emotions. The impact of divorce on finances can be life-lasting but taking precautions and thorough investigations of options can help a lot not only to save unnecessary costs but also some other hidden areas where you weren't aware. Following are some tips to save money during a divorce.
1.Avoid advice from everyone
People like your friends, family members, colleagues, neighbors, etc. will start giving unsolicited advice during the divorce process when you discuss it with them. They will share their own experiences and horror stories and advice on how to handle financial issues during the divorce process. Get advice only from those you trust. In this regard, attorneys or financial experts are the best options to save money during the divorce process.
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2.Consider your spouse
It can be challenging for someone who has started the divorce process to think about the soon-to-be ex-spouse's best interests and financial wellbeing. While making decisions about assets and finances, considering not only your interests but also your spouse's interests can help you to reduce divorce process time. You can save your own and your spouse's money if you spend less time in such negotiations because times spend with the attorney will also be shortened.
3.Goodbye to the joint bank account
You should close all joint bank accounts which were in use of you and your spouse especially credit base account. Block major and supplementary credit and debit cards. Your spouse can use it and you can suffer heavy financial loss. Closing of all joint accounts should be the first step to cut down financial loss during divorce proceedings.
4.Open a new checking account
In continuation of the previous point, open your new checking account. This will help you in terms of not only building up of financial history but also your credit record. Credit history will be helpful if you apply for a loan or any other credit facility. This financial history will let you control your money during the divorce process. If your bank account is not a joint account but you own it, then make sure that your spouse was not using supplementary debit or credit cards. If the spouse was using then block it immediately.
Divorce can include many additional and sometimes hidden costs along with routine costs. This can bring more stress and worries to your life. Saving money can help you to fight such financial status. Force savings every month in this regard can help a lot. You can do this by opening a savings account and setting up a debit order from your checking account.
Recovering from divorce is also a painful process but good thing is that it is possible to get through it and place better in terms of both finances and emotions.Getty pictures
6.Keeping track record of the expense
You may not be interested in maintaining a record sheet of your expenses during your married life. If so, then you should start now. Analyze your bank statement critically because expenses can be out of control now. Review your daily cost of things and make critical decisions to cut down unnecessary costs.
7.Chalk out budget
Ideally, a proper budget should be chalked out to control expenses and save money during the divorce process. Select important segments/areas of your lifestyle and allocate a budget to each of them. After allocation of budget, stick to it strictly every month. This can be problematic in the beginning but become easy when you become used to it. By doing this, you will also be able to manage your savings account by allocating money.
8.Own health insurance
Medical emergencies and different health issues can be sudden or without any notice. So, it is necessary to have a health insurance plan in order to not only pay bills of medicines and lab tests but also an unexpected expensive hospital stay. If your health insurance has previously been covering your spouse then it is advisable to set up your own health insurance plan. This can help you to save money.
9.Amendments in your will and beneficiaries
If you have already decided about your will beneficiaries then it is the right time to update it. Now your divorce is under process, so, the content of your will and beneficiaries should also be significantly changed. This is much needed because it is possible that now you have children and who you like to allocate your property and saving especially if the children were not present when you drew up the will.
10.Change power of attorney
Many people assign power of attorney to their spouses during the marriage. Now it is essential to update and end the power of attorney and signing authority given to the spouse. This will help you in terms of legal and financial matters.
11.Apply for online divorce
Advancement in technology has made it easy for everyone to save time and money. Now in the United States, it is easy to apply for a divorce online. You can save time and attorney fees by downloading all the required divorce documents online. You should not worry about which document and how downloaded because many local court websites can give detailed information about how to file divorce online and which documents are needed.
12.Make use of the mediator
It is extremely helpful to use the mediator to decide terms and conditions between you and your spouse. Although an attorney is needed in certain matters of divorce use of a mediator will help you in saving attorney fee
Many spouses are very conscious about expensive assets and luxuries that are going to be distributed among spouses after the divorce. So, they make decisions to splurge on these luxuries. It is advisable not to splurge as the cost of divorce proves may be past your expectation.
14.Do it yourself (DIY) divorce
Many people are unable to afford the cost of attorney and mediator, so, they now try to handle things by themselves as much as possible. The rate of divorce and its cost is increasing day by day. This factor making "do it yourself (DIY) divorce" popular. DIY spouses are using information given by some attorneys who are offering free consultation on their first meeting.
Disclaimer: ( The article is sponsored and hence promotes some commercial links)
Gone are those days when people, sports enthusiasts, and governments lined up to host the Olympics. Hosting the Olympics, once seemed to be an immensely prideful event, but it has now transformed into an economic burden. Host cities grapple with a plethora of problems which mainly include construction delays, cost overruns, security issues, and environmental concerns.
The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has more or less aggravated the problems. The Winter Olympic Games are scheduled for 2022 in Bejing, China. Furthermore, Paris and Los Angeles have been recently nominated as the hosts for the 2024 and 2028 Olympics Games respectively. Both cities have held the Games on two occasions previously, with Los Angeles hosting as recently as 1984. Simply submitting a bid to the International Olympics Committee (IOC) costs up to millions of dollars. Host cities typically have to spend $50 million to $100 million in fees to a slew of consultancy agencies, event management companies, etc.
Hosting the Olympics is more costly than the bidding process. For instance, London spent $14.6 billion for hosting the Games in 2012. On the other side, Beijing spent a lavish $42 billion for the Games in 2008. Meanwhile, the Russians spent $51 billion dollars on the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. Making, it the costliest Olympic Games in the history of the Olympics.
Governments of host cities and bid teams love to brag about the legacy of hosting the Games. But the hidden costs of such a massive project is too evident to hide. Such megaprojects require additional employment, as well as subsequent improvement of the pre-existing facilities and public infrastructure. Most of these projects are fraught with costs overruns, shoddy work and a lack of long term vision.
According to a study conducted at the prestigious Oxford University In England, by Danish geographer Bent Flyvbjerg and American journalist Allison Stewart, which looked into the individual economic parameters of hosting the Summer Olympic Games between 1960 and 2012. The findings were astonishing, they found out that the Olympic Games overrun the initial cost estimate with 100 per cent consistency. No other megaproject is this consistent regarding cost overruns.
Athens, in particular, seems to have been the tipping point. The city pridefully hosted the Games in 2004, which ended up costing them €9 billion (a whopping $11 billion at today's exchange rate). The offset of the Games was in disguise the onset of Greece's tumultuous years. The country now is in total disarray, with sky-high unemployment rates, failing economic apparatus, record levels of homelessness, all among the grandiose venues built for the Games.
The conclusion is simple, hosting the Olympics is an extravagant affair. If not planned properly, it tends to result in a severe economic crisis for the host city. If the host city lacks facilities and public infrastructure to support the excess crowds pouring in, not hosting the Olympics may be the best option.
Indian wrestler Ravi Kumar (57kg) and Deepak Punia (86kg) enjoyed fruitful outings at the Tokyo Olympic Games as they secured semifinal berths in their respective weight categories at the Makuhari Messe on Wednesday.
On the opening day of the wrestling competition, Ravi Kumar defeated Bulgaria's Georgi Vangelov 14-4 on technical superiority to reach the last-four in the men's 57kg category, while compatriot Deepak Punia overcame China's Zushen Lin 6-3 on points to advance to the semifinals.
Ravi Kumar will take on Nurislam Sanayev of Kazakhstan in the last-four, while Punia will be up against David Morris Taylor of the USA.
Earlier, Ravi Kumar had won his opening-round bout by technical superiority against Colombia's Oscar Tigreros to secure a quarterfinal spot. Competing in the Round-of-16 bout against the Colombian wrestler, the 23-year-old Ravi Kumar, who is making his Olympic debut, showed no nerves as he dominated the bout to win by technical superiority (13-2).
Ravi Kumar landed attack after attack and went 13-2 up, winning the bout by technical superiority with minutes to spare. In wrestling, building up a 10-point lead over the opponent results in a victory by technical superiority.
India's 86kg freestyle wrestler Deepak Punia showed no signs of the niggle that had forced him to pull out of the Poland Open Ranking Series in Warsaw in June, as he defeated Nigeria's Ekerekeme Agiomor on technical superiority to secure a quarterfinal berth.
He got his Olympic campaign to a fine start as he was in control from the start of the bout and hardly ever allowed his Nigerian opponent any room to maneuver his moves, finally winning with a 12-1 on technical superiority.
Punia, who had also suffered an elbow injury just before the Games, was slow at the start but came into his own as the bout progressed, inflicting takedowns at regular intervals to earn points.
The Indian wrestler eased into a 4-1 lead at the break and extended his lead comfortably in the second period.
Punia, the silver medallist from the 2019 world wrestling championships, then set up a clash with China's Lin Zushen in the quarterfinals and defeated him 6-3.