KOZHIKODE: Muslim organisations have asked the government to withdraw from the move to ‘impose gender-neutral ideas’ in educational institutions in the state. After a meeting of the organisations in Kozhikode on Monday, Panakkad Syed Rasheed Ali Shihab Thangal told reporters it is highly objectionable that the LDF government is trying to implement liberal ideology in educational institutions.
“Kerala society gives much importance to moral principles and family structure and majority of people in Kerala are religious believers,” he said adding that democracy means allowing people to stick to their beliefs. “Followers of religion have their own sets of principles and beliefs and trying to impose liberal ideology and cancelling all those ideals amount to fascism,” Thangal said.
He that the argument that gender neutrality is the answer to solve gender inequality would lead society to anarchy. “We are opposing the gender-neutral ideology that is being implemented. It is not just an issue of dress,” Thangal said. The meeting was convened by the IUML in the background of increasing campaign by individual Muslim organisations against the proposals in the curriculum framework prepared by the State Council for Education, Research and Training (SCERT). Party leader Dr MK Muneer’s remarks against gender-neutral ideology had sparked a controversy in Kerala.
The meeting decided to meet the chief minister and give a memorandum and hold an awareness campaign against gender neutrality, individually and collectively. IUML leaders P K Kunhalikutty, Dr M K Muneer, P M A Salam, Dr Muhammad Bahaudeen Nadvi (Samastha Kerala Jam-Iyyathul Ulema), A K Abdul Hameed, (Kanthapuram group of Sunnis), Sheikh Muhammad Karakunnu, Shihab Pookkoottoor, (Jama’at-e-Islami), Abduef Madani, T K Ashraf (Wisdom Islamic Organisation), P M Haneef (KNM-Markazudawa), Muhammad Koya (Muslim Service Society), and Kadavanad Muhammad (Muslim Education Society) attended the meeting.
The gender issue has given an opportunity for IUML to revive the coordination committee with added vigour. The presence of the representative of the Kanthapuram group, which usually stays away from the meeting convened by the IUML, has boosted the confidence of the party.
The fact that the LDF government had succumbed to the pressure of Muslim organisations in the Waqf Board and the Sriram Venkitaraman issues also bolstered the IUML to move strongly against the government.