A really bold article (Oh, when has she not been bold ? )
Would like to put together a couple of points here, which makes this lady catch my attention
First, from the article: (and I quote)
A couple of months ago, at the height of the purdah controversy, Shabana Azmi asserted that the Quran doesn't say anything about wearing the burqa. She's mistaken. This is what the Quran says:
(And she quotes... thank You Taslima, for Outlook would have never allowed a "non-Muslim" to quote the Quran for .... you know... "I is a RoP " .. may the truth RIP !!wonder how Shabana wud react to this !!)
There are many views on why and how the Islamic purdah started. One view has it that Prophet Mohammed became very poor after spending all the wealth of his first wife. At that time, in Arabia, the poor had to go to the open desert and plains for relieving themselves and even their sexual needs. The Prophet's wives too had to do the same. He had told his wives that "I give you permission to go out and carry out your natural work". (Bukhari Hadis first volume book 4 No. 149). And this is what his wives started doing accordingly. One day, Prophet Mohammed's disciple Uman complained to him that these women were very uncomfortable because they were instantly recognisable while relieving themselves
Umar proposed a cover but Prophet Mohammed ignored it. Then the Prophet asked Allah for advice and he laid down the Ayat (33:59) (Bukhari Hadis Book 026 No. 5397).This is the history of the purdah, according to the Hadis. But the question is: since Arab men too relieved themselves in the open, why didn't Allah start the purdah for men? Clearly, Allah doesn't treat men and women as equals, else there would be purdah for both! Men are higher than women. So women have to be made walking prisons and men can remain free birds.
( Ha... that was for the owners and the customers of the Surayya Fashion Purdahs in my part of the world - India>Kerala>Malabar)
My question to Shabana and her supporters, who argue that the Quran says nothing about purdah is: If the Quran advises women to use purdah, should they do so? My answer is, No. Irrespective of which book says it, which person advises, whoever commands, women should not have purdah. No veil, no chador, no hijab, no burqa, no headscarf. Women should not use any of these things because all these are instruments of disrespect.
(Well, over here, I do not fully agree with the second part.. just as one should not force to use purdah, one shud not force not to use it either... if some one decides to live their life forever (out of personal choice) inside those sacks, so be it .. )
Anyways, couple of other interesting points about Taslima
On Surayya's decision to embrace Islam, Nasreen said: "I asked her why did you do that. She was silent. I asked whether she regretted it. She said 'yes'." Nasreen said Surayya was now in a cage and she should have the freedom to "live the life she likes".
(Well Surayya later denied it... of course, for if not, she will have a fatwa on her, now that she has fallen into the trap )
And more bold statements
‘The Islam religion and their scriptures are out of place and out of time. It still follows the 7th century laws and is hopeless. The need of the hour is not reformation but revolution,’ said Nasreen interacting with reporters here.
Well, not without reactions :
“Taslima should be thrown out of the country,” AIMPLB member Kamal Farooqi said. “The article written by her in Outlook magazine was derogatory and outrageous.”Farooqi said the AIMPLB will soon approach the external affairs ministry to ask that Taslima be thrown out of India, where she has lived since she fled Bangladesh in 1994 after receiving death threats for her novel “Lajja”.
Many a time truth hurts, doesn't it ?