As Belgium has already banned the ‘oppressive’ Islamic veil ‘Burqa’ and France is all set to follow suit, we in the third world are wondering if these countries are going to declare ‘bikini’ as their national attire.
There is no denying the fact that European women are a gorgeous lot and bikini suits them to the hilt, but does it mean that a nation should ban all its women from covering themselves up? I wonder!
When I was in school, a seemingly frustrated, middle-aged English teacher, who was a self proclaimed custodian of Indian culture once told me that he fails to understand the concept of semi-clad women being considered ‘modern’ and ‘progressive’, after all, human beings used to be naked before the advent of clothes. So going back to nudity can’t be considered “progress”!
At that time, it was all Greek for an eighth standard student, but now I can easily make out the inherent meaning of his words and couldn’t but empathize.
above mentioned views might be considered typical of a ‘middle class Muslim’, so I want to give a simple logic to support my argument.
The preachers of democracy across the world propagate ‘freedom of expression’ as one of the most important needs of human life. The way one dresses up is purely a matter of personal choice and a way of expression. How can you terminate the most basic fundamental right in the name of liberating people from ‘oppressive customs’?
Another point that I want to put forward is that if forcing a woman to wear ‘Burqa’ against her will is a crime (now punishable under new laws in Belgium and France), don’t you think forcing a woman not wear something against her will should also be considered a crime.
I just fail to understand the logic behind banning ‘Burqa’; after all how can a country deny the most basic right of a woman - to cover herself up?
I have grown up in a pretty conservative middle-class Muslim family of Bihar, where we followed all Islamic customs religiously. But even then, I never came across a single incident when anyone forced the women in the family to wear ‘Burqa’; it was always a matter of personal choice for them.
It is a matter of personal choice and freedom and governments should not interfere in it.
I must admit that I am not complaining though. After all, France is a country where even the President can have an extramarital affair and the First Lady can roam around in a bikini. We, in the third world, are too underdeveloped to understand such “progress”.
And, having said all, which man wouldn’t like the sight of a bikini-clad Carla Bruni?
We too, the poor and deprived people of third world, love women in bikinis!
(The views expressed by the author are personal)