The Sri Lanka government has issued a decree banning buqas and other face-covering garments effective from Monday, in light of the Easter Sunday attacks.
The series of blasts that ripped through eight locations of the island country, killing 253 and injuring 500. The attacks were carried out by a local cell that pledged allegiance to the Islamic State. In response, the Sri Lanka governmnet has banned all manner of face covering, including burqa.
“Wearing garments that cover the face completely will be banned from tomorrow, to ensure public safety," the presidential decree reads.
The move comes just days after a parliamentarian submitted a Private Member’s Motion to ban the burqa on security grounds. MP Ashu Marasinghe had said that the garment was "not a traditional Muslim attire".
In light of the ban, author Taslima Nasreen took to show her support of the decision.
Sri Lanka banned burqas for 'public protection' after bomb attacks. Good decision. It will help women feel like human beings. They deserve to have the right to not live in a mobile prison.— taslima nasreen (@taslimanasreen) April 29, 2019
People were however, divided in their opinion of this ban. Some were in favor, especially of her terming it a 'mobile prison.'
Mobile prison! Perfect description.— Dr. Bakul Javadekar. (@DrJavadekar) April 29, 2019
Time has come to scale this and replicate across the globe— salil hasabnis (@salilhasabnis) April 29, 2019
Great I think Indian government also follow this— Prabhat (@prabhatj19) April 29, 2019
This is the best thing to do .. similar thing I would like in India as well— Amardeep Chowdhury (@Amardeepbasu) April 29, 2019
Mobile prison, nice term...— Rajnish Sinha (@rajnish_t) April 29, 2019
Isn't it suppression on minority living here if they want to wear this? Isn't it obstacle to the rights of minority's following?— Zafar Faruki💘 (@AbuZaformohamm3) April 29, 2019
What about those women who want to wear it? The state shouldn't enforce either a ban or to wear it. Woman who don't want to wear it should have the freedom not to wear it, and those do want to wear it should have the freedom to wear it. No force either way.— Srinivas Kari (@Srinivas_Kari) April 29, 2019
Out of the 9 suicide bombers, only 1 was a woman. SL bans burqas & punishes ALL Muslim women, which is gender discrimination, & leaving men unaffected. When terrorist attack happened, NZ PM wore burqa but SL does just the opposite! https://t.co/Ig76fmMDre— Chowkidarni Sandhya (@PplOfIndia) April 29, 2019
Nasreen is a Bangladeshi-Swedish writer who has been living in exile since 1994. A vocal proponent of women's rights and the women's empowerment movement in Bangladesh, the writer has often characterized Islam as a "misogynistic" religion. She has faced severe backlash from Islamic right-wingers in Bangladesh, and even attacked by Muslim hardliners in Hyderabad when she was exiled in India.
In an earlier interview, Nasreen had mentioned her stance on burqas in general, "If you're truly secular, encourage Muslim women not to wear burqa and introduce a universal civil code."