Tajikistan Bans Hijab

Tajikistan is a country where at least 90% of the population identifies as Muslim.
an indonesian woman in hijab
Photo: Mohammad Rizal Sutrisno

Tajikistan’s working women face a tough choice: their job or their faith. The government in Dushanbe has been cracking down on Islamic clothing, including the hijab, in schools and workplaces.

This unofficial ban forces many women to pick between their career aspirations and their religious beliefs.

Radio Ozodi reports that despite no official law, authorities are enforcing a de facto ban in schools and workplaces. This forces women to navigate a grey area – wanting to wear the hijab while keeping their jobs or education.

While authorities have been unofficially pushing women out of wearing hijabs in schools and workplaces, the parliament recently took a harsher step. They amended the “traditions and celebrations” law to formally ban “clothes alien to Tajik culture” – a term often used for Islamic clothing. This new law prohibits wearing, importing, selling, and even advertising these garments.

The new amendments impose steep fines for violations. Regular citizens could be fined up to $740, while businesses risk fines over $5,400. But the biggest fines are reserved for government officials and religious leaders who defy the ban.

The draft laws are expected to sail through the upper house of parliament and be signed into law by President Emomali Rahmon.

Residents in Dushanbe aren’t happy about the hijab ban. Many believe it tramples on their right to choose what they wear. For some Tajiks, this new law just puts a stamp on what’s already been happening unofficially for years – pressure to ditch the hijab in public spaces.

Tajikistan’s crackdown on the hijab isn’t new. It all started back in 2007 with restrictions in schools and has since spread to all public institutions. Authorities have even cracked down in markets and fined women on the streets for wearing headscarves.

This push against Islamic clothing goes beyond bans. The government actively promotes national dress. Back in 2017, they urged women to wear Tajik clothing and even released a hefty guidebook (a whopping 376 pages!) showcasing “approved” outfits.

Tajikistan’s crackdown on religious expression isn’t just about the hijab. The government has also been unofficially banning beards for over a decade.

Thousands of men have reportedly been forced to shave their beards by police. This isn’t an isolated incident – neighboring Uzbekistan has cracked down on beards as well. In 2021, reports surfaced of police forcing men to shave their facial hair.

join whatsapp channel

Pin it
Notify of

Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Previous Article
When to Take Off Ihram After Hajj

When to Take Off Ihram After Hajj and Umrah?

Next Article
Annual Ceremony to Replace Kiswah on 1st Muharram 1446

Kiswa To Be Changed On 1st Muharram 1446 [2024]

Related Posts