Came across this interesting and informative post at Maldivian blog-Rehendhi. The bloggers at Rehendhi describe themselves as underground feminist movement .
Recent post of women of Maldives being forced to wear veil caught my attention..here is a snip
“Now we have a Ministry of Islamic Affairs instead of a Gender Ministry that had a mission of dealing with issues of women and children in the country. The change of ministries indicates the shift of policy importance to the government. This thought is scary particularly seeing a government that took charge on a ticket of enforcing free and fair society. And two years into the governing the view on the streets is far from free and fair with misogyny propagated in the name of Islam. President Nasheed although recently has accepted this worsening situation considers the current propagation of extreme views as freedom and a religious ideology.”
Growing religious extremism in Maldives is something ignored/hidden from the international and regional media. I guess Maldives itself is ignored a lot..only when there is discussion about global warming or exotic tourist destination Maldives comes to attention.
“Radicalisation of Maldives society by fundamental ideas has had a huge impact on the condition of women in the society. The once peaceful Maldives is witnessing a new era of misogyny and “enslavement” of women, due to the spread of extremist ideas in the name of Islam, under the newly found freedom of democracy. The public has been misinformed about the actual state of women in Islam and the rights Islam has provided for women in general.
Abusing Qur’an and particularly Islam is not new in Maldives. Many scholars have abused religion, as a means of spreading their own version of Islam in order to attain a hidden agenda. Fundamentalists are acting under the disguise of ‘true Islam’ and interpreting verses
of the Qur’an in their own ways, to spread misogyny in the country. “
Radical ideas about Islam and role of women, it is clear, is not limited to the traditional hotspots like Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Middle East. The venom has reached islands of Maldives too.