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India: ’Imam Bukhari is a sexist:’ statement by Indian Muslims for Secular Democracy

Wednesday 30 November 2022, by siawi3


Minorities Gender and Sexuality

Imam Bukhari is a sexist: IMSD

Sabrangindia 25 Nov 2022

Press release

Imam Bukhari is a sexist
OK for boys to loiter, not OK for girls?
Women have equal right to sacred spaces
Open all mosques to Muslim women

Indian Muslims for Secular Democracy (IMSD) condemns the blatant sexism of Imam Bukhari of Delhi’s Shahi Jama Masjid, even as it welcomes his decision since to remove the boards prohibiting Muslim girls from entering the precincts of the mosque.

The earlier decision to put up the notice board was sought to be explained on the ground that Muslim girls ‘loiter’ around the mosque’s sprawling compound. Presumably it’s OK for boys to loiter, not OK for girls. Such an attitude reeks of a patriarchal mindset.

The imam has sought to clarify that the do-not-enter directive did not apply to women who were welcome as before to pray at the mosque. We appreciate the clarification since IMSD has consistently supported the right of women from all religions to equal access to all sacred spaces on par with men.

Muslim women have prayed inside the mosques in Mecca and Medina from the time of Prophet Mohammed. They continue to do so even today in Saudi Arabia and much of the Arab world, the land of Islam’s birth.

Given this, it is the height of irony that in much of the Indian sub-continent (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh) Muslim men have kept the doors of mosques shut for Muslim women. IMSD welcomes the fact that in recent years some Muslim religious bodies have started creating space for women inside mosques. It demands that ALL mosques open their doors similarly.

Statement issued by:
Javed Anand, Convener, IMSD
Feroze Mithiborwala Coconvener, IMSD

Photos here