Kerala Kaumudi Online
Saturday, 20 July 2024 3.09 AM IST

Hijab, beard banned in this country with 95% Muslim population


DUSHANBE: People living in Islamic countries tend to follow certain rules in dress and lifestyle. What is traditionally followed by each generation is practiced by the new generation. However, there is one Islamic country in the world that has deviated from this traditional practice and implemented a strict policy forbidding women from wearing hijab and men from growing beards. It is about Tajikistan.

Tajikistan is a constitutionally secular country with over 95 percent Muslim majority. Emomali Ali Rahmon has been the President for the last three decades in this country which has a lot of historical importance. According to a report released in 2015, there are laws preventing female students under 18 from wearing hijab.

People under 18 are not allowed to participate in religious ceremonies except for funerals. Along with this, the government has also restricted private events like funerals and marriages. Although none of these programs are completely banned, there are some restrictions. Functions can be conducted only after permission is obtained from the government. The government will also decide how many people should participate. All these conditions continue to prevail in the country even today.

The US International Religious Freedom Report mentions that the Tajikistan government's stance on religious freedom is deteriorating. It is alleged that the President is continuing the policy of oppression in the country. The allegation of suppressing public religious sentiments and oppressing minority communities is also strong. The government has imposed some restrictions on functions like weddings and funerals. Along with these bans, beards and hijab have been banned in the country. The reason behind the ban on beards is that men should keep their faces clean.

According to a report released by the US, Islamic book stalls located in Dushanbe were forced to close in 2022. Religious goods cannot be imported into the country without government’s approval. This was reported in 2023. The government of Tajikistan is taking such a stand to prevent radicalization. Tajikistan shares a border with Afghanistan, making it a constant victim of threats from the Taliban and ISIS.

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