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Burqa row:Khatija Rahman fumes over faith-based double standards

Responding to criticism on her choice of clothing, A.R.
Rahman’s daughter Khatija advised Bangladeshi-Swedish writer Taslima Nasrin to
Google the meaning of ‘true feminism’.

Sharing a photo of Khatija covering her face with a niqab
Taslima Nasrin had tweeted that she felt ‘suffocated’ whenever she looked at
pictures of Rahman’s daughter.

Taking to her Instagram profile to reply to the writer,
Khatija who is a social worker, Director and Trustee of the A R Rahman
Foundation, as well as a musician-singer, wrote: “Been only a year and this
topic is in the rounds again… there’s so much happening in the country and all
people are concerned about is the piece of attire a woman wants to wear. Wow,
I’m quite startled. Every time this topic comes the fire in me rages and makes
me want to say a lot of things..Over the last one year, I’ve found a different
version of myself which I haven’t seen in so many years. I will not be weak or
regret the choices I’ve made in life. I am happy and proud of what I do and
thanks to those who have accepted me the way I am. My work will speak, God
willing… I don’t wish to say any further.”

She added, “Dear Taslima Nasreen, I’m sorry you feel
suffocated by my attire. Please get some fresh air, cause I don’t feel
suffocated rather I’m proud and empowered for what I stand for. I suggest you
google up what true feminism means because it isn’t bashing other women down
nor bringing their fathers into the issue. I also don’t recall sending my
photos to you for your perusal.”

In another post, Khatija thanked the people who supported
her on social media. She appealed: “I request you all not to abuse or make any
hate speech against Ms. Taslima. Lets strive to become a broad minded society
in accepting the choices our fellow human beings make and also remember Ms. Taslima
in our prayers and not judge her for the choices she’s made in life. Peace.”

Sharing a picture of a burqa-clad woman, Khatija wrote, “Why the double standards and sudden concerns only when it comes to women belonging to a certain faith? Haven’t we seen men wearing turbans? Women wearing habits ? Why only when it comes to a particular faith are women targeted for the choices they make wholeheartedly and with pride. Why ? Why ? And why ? I simply do not understand.”

Khatija also shared a picture with her dad and sister Rahmeen at Baku in Azerbaijan, titling it, “Peaceful time with family away from ‘suffocation’”.

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