Hijab is not our national or traditional dress. So whoever wants to force someone to wear hijab should be punished. It doesn’t matter if a girl wears hijab or not. I strongly condemn what happened to the girl at Narsingdi station.
What I wear in our country is my choice. However, it is also a matter of thinking that a university student should have at least an understanding of what kind of clothes to wear in any environment. I like to walk around wearing shorts four inches high from the knee. I always wear those shorts in Dhaka. But, even if I go to my village house outside Dhaka, the locals take it as a terrible kind of disrespect. There is also the possibility of being beaten.
I never wore those shorts outside, except inside the house. I did the same in my student days.
Many will say that I am taking the side of the woman who is pulling the girl’s clothes. The woman should be punished for the filth she has committed. But, think about our condition once.
As our endurance diminishes day by day, so does our intelligence. It’s up to the university student to decide what to wear, but she should at least understand what kind of clothes she should wear to suit her environment. Isn’t it foolish to go to a place like Narsingdi in that dress?
Surprising but true is the fact that Buddhist and Hindu temples in Tourist Place are plagued by this problem. Tourists visiting there do not understand that one has to enter Adinath, Chandranath temple or Bano Bihar, Swarna Mandir or other temples in any dress. How to respect the religion of others.
Yesterday I saw a 6/7 year old child of my batchmate colleague dancing to a Tamil movie song imitating that hero at the Education Week event in Uttara. That colleague of mine’s agricultural cadre and his education officer’s wife are proudly posting it on Facebook and showing it to everyone. There is nothing wrong with the baby. But, in our time, education week, we knew that children would wear patriotic costumes, some would sing patriotic, bhavaiya, vatiali, jari-sari, some would live with these songs, some would draw pictures, some would recite poems.
But, his parents are teaching him that by showing him Tamil movies. The Uttara Thana Education Officer should have called his parents and warned them to be attracted to the local culture. Of course, neither the teacher nor the education officer discouraged him because of his age. But, why don’t parents know what can be taught to a child of this age.
A few days ago, a number of Bangladeshi artists came to Iran to celebrate our Independence Day and Pohela Boishakh to enhance our culture. They went to represent the country and left representing a neighboring country. I will be ashamed, I will not be sad, I will laugh! Where have we come from that even our new generation of artists do not have the knowledge of how to dance to a song to represent the country, what kind of dance can be danced or what kind of song can be sung.
Today I saw a woman giving a speech and proudly saying that foolish, empty-headed women wear hijab. The gentlewoman doesn’t know what to do with the mic in front of her in any environment. He is also a man of mindless head who hurts freedom of dress.
Day by day we are trying to prove ourselves smart by losing culture, sociality, family values, trying to prove ourselves modern. But, I am forgetting that adapting to the environment is the greatest smartness, promoting one’s own culture is the greatest smartness, knowing what can be done is also smartness, being able to say what can be said is also smartness. Being able to teach my child the right thing is also my smartness.
Author: Walid Islam,
Head of Chancery, Embassy of Bangladesh in Iran