Kuala Lumpur: Muslim women flight attendants working for Malaysia Airlines (MAS) should be allowed to wear the hijab or the Islamic head dress, a minister has said.
"Those who want to cover their aurat should be able to do so," said Khairy Jamaluddin, the Minister of Youth and Sports and youth chief of the ruling Malay party UMNO.
'Aurat' in Malay language refers to "female body parts" that Muslims must cover with clothing.
Earlier, a local daily reported that UMNO Youth executive committee member Dazma Shah Daud had asked the national carrier to make it compulsory that Muslim women flight attendants should wear the head dress and that the airline should stop serving alcohol onboard.
Dazma, however, clarified his statement, saying that he was misquoted.
"What I said was that those who want to wear hijab should be able to do so," he said, adding that the practice of banning the hijab was discriminatory.
He also asked the airline to alter the uniforms for women flight attendants so that it could be worn with the hijab.
Dazma said that Muslim flight attendants should be allowed to opt out from having to serve alcohol to passengers.
He said the job of serving alcohol could be taken over by non-Muslim flight attendants.
Malaysia is a Muslim majority country with 60 per cent Malays - all Muslims.
Troubled Malaysia Airlines, hit by double disasters of MH370 and MH17, plans to delist and make it fully government- owned under a "complete overhaul" announced by the its largest shareholder earlier this month.