World Hijab Day will be marked on February 1st where thousands of people around the world, Muslims and non-Muslims will both be adorned with the beauty of hijab in soliditary of the ‘hijabis’ all over the world.
During this period where hijab is being ridiculed or considered as oppression and backwardness, the World Hijab Day (WHD) provides a platform of understanding and awareness of the Muslim head cover. This day culminates the fact that hijab is religious mandated and millions of Muslim women make the free choice in following the God’s law.
Today Hijabi Muslim women are facing discrimination and deprived of many right for the sole reason of wearing the head cover. The persecution that Muslim women around the world undergo can not be understood unless someone has stepped in their shoes.
In the official website of World Hijab Day, a non-Muslim, Chelsea Dusenbury, has shared her own personal experience when she was discriminated for wearing hijab, which was just a 24 hour experience for her. She has also clarified on the importance of this day as “World Hijab Day is not about taking a fashion risk. It is not about fetishising a religion or a culture paired with it. It is about standing with our sisters in unity, with reverence and respect. It is a sacred opportunity to remember and honour religious heritage, whether it is our own or our sisters. It is about re-discovering the beauty of choice, and reminding those around us that hijab is not a symbol of oppression. It is a day to humble oneself and to remember God. I believe events like World Hijab Day are absolutely vital to our society. It promotes unity and growth, while squashing stereotypes—things we are ever in dire need of.”
Muslims clad themselves with hijab as a symbol of being obedient to their God, as a symbol of dignity and modesty. The bitter truth is there are people who incite their hatred and discrimination towards women due to their hijab, this discrimination is now manifested in almost all places such as schools, workplaces and common places as parks, stations, restaurants, the list is endless.The price for meeting up with their religious needs is untold pains, loss of education and sometimes even physical abuses.
February 1st will be a day that explains to everyone the necessity of securing religious freedom and also the national interest it invokes. It is when non-Muslims and Muslim women unite, in understanding and respecting the other individuals choice. It spreads the message of equality where each individual is valued and respected for their choice.
The importance of this day is for people to build the courage and willingly step into their shoes of hijabi and experience the luxury of it. An opportunity where people, after their personal experiences, contemplate on their perspectives of religious freedom and choice.