Allahabad HC Refuses To Allow Suspended Muslim Cop To Keep Beard While In Service

New Delhi: Citing violation of official orders, the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court has refused to allow a suspended Muslim policeman to keep a beard while in service. Justice Rajesh Singh Chauhan announcing the order on a writ petition filed by police constable Mohd Farman said that it violates official orders and he can’t seek protection under Article 25 of the Constitution.Police constable Mohd Farman was suspended in November last year for maintaining a beard despite being told to shave it. On this, the constable approached the court seeking that he be allowed to keep a beard. In his petition, Farman cited Article 25, which deals with freedom of religion.ALSO READ | Bangle Seller Lynched By Mob In Indore Booked Under POCSO Act & Forging DocumentsTaking a note of the circular issued by the state DGP on October 26, 2020, prohibiting policemen to keep a beard, the HC Bench passed an order saying that not shaving a beard despite being given directions by higher officials is a violation of the circular and as such is not only a wrong behaviour but also the misdemeanour, misdeed and delinquency of the cop.The Bench further observed that keeping a beard by a member of a disciplined force may not be protected under Article 25.”This is a domain of competent authority to issue guidelines in respect of wearing proper uniform and keeping the appearance in a manner required for the members of a disciplined force and no interference should be done,” the court said, as reported by PTI.The bench rebutted the plea that maintaining a beard is a fundamental right of the petitioner and said that Article 25 of the Indian Constitution does not confer absolute right in this regard.

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