Atiya Siddiqua, a woman cleric and president of the women wing of India’s Jamaat-e-Islami Hind—an Islamic organization known for more moderate views—says that women who don’t adhere to Islamic dress code are polluting the environment.
Appearing as part of an event aimed at removing misconceptions about Islam though an “awareness campaign”, Siddiqua claimed that women who wear tightly fitted clothing are like “pollutants” who cause harm to the society, one local newspaper reported. She added that such women are to blame for increased incidents in rape in India, as well as the spreading of AIDS.
A journalist asked Siddiqua why women have to cover their heads while men don’t, and the female cleric drew a rather unorthodox comparison:
Uncovered women are polluting the environment. There is concern …about air pollution; water pollution but the biggest pollution for the society are uncovered women. It is these women who are polluting the environment…The disease of AIDS is spreading, rape incidents are increasing on this account. Women who wear tight clothes pollute the environment.”
Siddiqua was one of the speakers at the a function organized by JIH for raising awareness about the Muslim Personal Law (laws based upon the Sharia).
“There is a need to educate, uplift and morally reform the Muslim society as a whole. A primary reason for violation of Sharia (Islamic laws) is lack of awareness among the Muslims,” she said.
There are over 172 million people in India that identify as adherents of Islam, which makes it the second largest religion in the country.