Thanks to the Jammu and Kashmir Grand Mufti Bashiruddin Ahmad’s decree that singing is un-Islamic (and Dukhtaran-e-Millat’s threat of ‘social boycott’), Kashmir has lost its only all-girls rock band, with its three teenage members deciding to call it quits. If singing is indeed un-Islamic, the grand mufti should stop Pakistani singers from coming here to take part in competitions. The action of the mufti and those supporting him smacks of double standards.
Harischandra Parasuram, Mumbai
I am shocked at the novel methods in which women are harassed. When Muslim men, sing, play musical instruments, are part of musical bands or perform on stage, they are hailed as great artists and brilliant performers. But when three young Muslim girls seek to do the very same things, their act is declared un-Islamic! The problem, therefore, is not about being a Muslim. It is about being a woman. Some men want things to be that way because it suits them.
Sanghamitra Malik, Hyderabad
It was a pleasure to learn that, for the first time, women musicians from Iran performed before men. At the same time, it was disheartening to learn that the Jammu and Kashmir grand mufti decreed that singing is “un-Islamic.” A developed society should promote girls in all fields.
Although India is a secular state, a few people still seek to dominate States like Kashmir. It is because we tolerate their behaviour that they feel they can get away with any decree restricting women. As no one cares, women continue to suffer.
Salman Lalani, Hyderabad