In the wake of the Easter Sunday terror attacks in Sri Lanka, that killed over 250 people, Shiv Sena called for a ban on the use of burqa on Wednesday. The Sena stated that the move was recommended as an ‘emergency measure’ to ensure that those wearing face-masks or burqas shouldn’t be a threat to national security. Responding to which, veteran lyrist Javed Akhtar soon passed a remark, emphasising that if burqa is banned, the use of ghunghat in Rajasthan should be banned too.
"If you want to bring a law banning burqa here (in India) and if it is someone's view I have no objection. But before the last phase of election in Rajasthan, this government should announce a ban on the practice of 'ghunghat ' (covering of the face by Hindu women) in that state," said Javed Akhtar to PTI. He further added, "I feel that ghunghat should go and the burqa should go. I will be happy. I have little knowledge of the burqa as there were working women in my family and I haven't seen the practice at my home. Iraq is a very orthodox Muslim country but the women there do not cover their faces. The law in Sri Lanka (now), too, forbids face cover."
His remark pulled in a lot of backlashes reportedly from both Muslim and Hindu communities. To clear the air, he took to his Twitter handle on Friday to provide his share of justification. He mentioned that his statement is ‘distorted’ by many people and added that he meant that face-covering should be banned for ‘women empowerment’.
Take a look at Javed’s tweet here:
What do you think will be the aftermath of his comment? Will this burqa ghunghat debate continue? Only time will tell!