Haredi man outside draft office
Haredi man outside draft office Flash90

Dozens of haredi yeshiva students have been ordered to report for the draft this coming Sunday and Monday, says MK Yaakov Margi (Shas), coinciding exactly with the upcoming holiday of Purim.

Margi, who chairs the Education, Culture, and Sports Committee in the Knesset, says his office has received dozens of requests over the past week from haredi yeshiva students who say they have received orders from the IDF requiring they appear at induction centers during the Purim holiday next week.

A statement from the IDF justified the induction orders, saying that Purim is not a recognized holiday from work in Israel.

The students requested that MK Margi intervene on their behalf to have the draft orders delayed until after the holiday.

Draftees who fail to report as ordered on Purim could face prosecution, Margi’s office said.

“If someone who receives the notice does not appear [as ordered], the army could take action against him, and in some cases he will be declared a draft-dodger.”

On Thursday, Margi penned a letter to the Defense Ministry, requesting a delay for the yeshiva students, allowing them to be inducted after the Purim holiday. Some of the draftees, he noted, had volunteered for service in the IDF.

“My office has received many complaints from yeshiva students…whose draft date has been set for Purim. They have reported to me that they requested a delay in their induction, but were told that if they did not appear at the date listed, they would be declared draft dodgers. It should be noted that some of those who approached me volunteered on their own to enlist in the IDF.”

After writing to the Defense Ministry, Margi spoke with an army official responsible for induction. The officer said the IDF had accepted the appeal, and that new induction dates would be issued to the draftees in question.