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Published On: Sun, Jun 30th, 2019

I still remain a Muslim.. and no one should comment on what I choose to wear: Nusrat Jahan

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800109-nusrat-jahan-tmc-1KOLKATA/ NEW DELHI : Newly-elected Trinamool Congress parliamentarian Mimi Chakraborty has backed her party colleague and friend Nusrat Jahan who has been criticised by some Muslim clerics for wearing vermilion (sindoor) and bangles.
Nusrat Jahan, a first-time MP and a popular Bengali actress, on Saturday hit back at the critics saying she represents an “inclusive India”. In a post, which she shared on Twitter, Nusrat Jahan wrote that “faith is beyond attire”.
“Paying heed or reacting to comments made by hardliners of any religion only breeds hatred and violence, and history bears testimony to that,” Ms Jahan, 29, wrote in an elaborate post.

The actor-turned-politician, who got married to businessman Nikhil Jain on June 19 in Turkey, was reacting to a fatwa issued against her by the clerics based in UP’s Deoband after she was seen wearing vermilion, bangles and a saree when she took oath in parliament earlier this week. The clerics claimed Ms Jahan “disrespected Islam” by marrying into a Jain family and called her attire “un-Islamic”.

Mimi Chakroborty, also a first-time parliamentarian and a popular actress in Bengal, retweeted her friend’s post on Saturday to mark her support and wrote: “We r indian and thats our only identification (sic).”
Newly elected MP and actor Nusrat Jahan has said no one should comment on what she chooses to wear as “faith is beyond any attire”, refusing to toe the line of hardline Muslim clerics who criticised her for wearing vermilion and mangalsutra.

A section of Deoband-based clerics reportedly also issued a ‘fatwa’ (diktat) against the Trinamool Congress lawmaker. The first-time MP from West Bengal’s Basirhat came to Parliament on June 25 wearing vermilion and sporting a ‘mangalsutra’, and said ‘Vande Matram’ after taking oath.The clerics claimed Jahan disrespected Islam by marrying into the Jain religion and called her attire “un-Islamic”.
“Muslims can only marry Muslims and are only allowed to bend before Allah. Islam has no place for Vande Matram, ‘mangalsutra’ and vermilion and they are against the religion,” claimed Mufti Asad Kasami of Jamia Shaikh-ul Hind. Responding to the criticism, Jahan on Saturday night tweeted, “Paying heed or reacting to comments made by hardliners of any religion only breeds hatred and violence, and history bears testimony to that.”
Affirming that she represents an “inclusive India…Which is beyond the barriers of caste, creed and religion,” she said, “…..I still remain a Muslim….and none should comment on what I choose to wear…..Faith is beyond attire.” She commented on her tweet that faith “is more about believing and practicing the invaluable doctrines of religion.”
Many people have come in Jahan’s support, including women leaders of the ruling BJP at the Centre. India Union Budget 2019: What does Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have up her sleeve? Click here for top and latest Budget news, views and analyses.
She also said she will “always support” her friend. “I have supported and will support my friend whether she wears vermilion or bangles. One must respect one’s personal life. In fact, we were trolled for even donning jeans. Women should be given respect and we represent the country,” the 30-year-old was quoted as saying by news agency IANS.
The two Trinamool lawmakers were earlier trolled for wearing “western clothes” in parliament. At that time too, Mimi Chakraborty had slammed the critics and asked why the cricketer-turned-BJP parliamentarian Gautam Gambhir was not subjected to similar scrutiny for turning up in casual wear.
Among other leaders who have come out in Nusrat Jahan’s support over the fatwa are BJP’s Babul Supriyo. “Everybody has the right to lifestyle choice. No one can issue any fatwa on one’s personal choices.
I will congratulate Nusrat who married recently. I saw her in Parliament and she sported bangles and vermilion, which is her own choice and she carried herself well. She is doing the right thing,” Mr Supriyo, who is also a lawmaker from Bengal, was quoted as saying by a news ageny..
Among other leaders who have come out in Nusrat Jahan’s support over the fatwa are BJP’s Babul Supriyo. “Everybody has the right to lifestyle choice. No one can issue any fatwa on one’s personal choices. I will congratulate Nusrat who married recently.

I saw her in Parliament and she sported bangles and vermilion, which is her own choice and she carried herself well. She is doing the right thing,” Mr Supriyo, who is also a lawmaker from Bengal, was quoted as saying by a news agency.

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