The first of February was World Hijab Day. This is a very young holiday, which six years ago came up with Nazma Khan, a native of Bangladesh. She urged all women, regardless of religion, to wear a hijab for one day to understand what Muslim women have to wear in headscarves.

Fatima, 23 years old:

I was born and raised in the capital, in a pretty modern family. I decided to put on a hijab in the ninth grade. The first people to oppose were dad and brothers, because even then they saw oppression of women in hijabs. But since dad is a very democratic person, he did not strongly oppose my decision. Friends also reacted well to my undertaking – they do not judge people by their clothes. True, on the streets then and now, I see disapproving looks, but I do not attach any importance to this, although it can be unpleasant. But I understand that the level of education and culture of people is different.

I was not the first in the family to wear a hijab. Literally shortly before me, my mother did it. But do not think – it was not she who caused my decision. This was facilitated, firstly, by understanding the essence, beauty and purpose of the scarf, as God’s will. Secondly, it gave me a sense of individuality and the right to make decisions myself. A hijab is not paraphernalia or national clothing, but a hijab is a covering of certain parts of the body indicated in the Qur’an that cannot be covered with a simple Tajik scarf.

A girl in our society who wears a hijab becomes harder to live from year to year. When I graduated from school, I breathed a sigh of relief, thinking that there would be no problems at the university because of the hijab. But it was not there. Then I began to dream of graduating as soon as possible, but reality again brought me down to earth. Now neither me, nor my mother is allowed to go to many state institutions – even to hospitals, we are not allowed to go to school with my brother. There is no question of getting a job. I abandoned these attempts long ago, so I have to work remotely. And I also try to go out less often, not to get sick, and try not to attend state institutions on personal matters.

Most recently, several women with police officers stopped me on the street and took me to the building of the Ministry of Education, where for a long time they gave a lecture on the danger of a national scale, which carries a piece of material on my head. To my questions, on what basis they demand me to take off the hijab, they threatened in a rude manner that they would hand me over to security officers. After much debate, they let me go, but not everyone, like me, can assert their rights. Many women, for example, take off a scarf.

Recently, our whole family decided to live in Istanbul for a while, there I met a people who respects a woman because she is just a woman. There, no one judges you by clothing or religious background. Only by deeds and actions. A country in which girls are given the opportunity to develop, live and think freely, receives women engineers, artists, poets, doctors, writers, politicians and entrepreneurs.

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“This is nun,” – so often, without embarrassment, people say about me in my presence. My friends say that I became “quite intestinal, but I was so modern!” Unfortunately, there is an opinion that the majority of those who wear a hijab are uneducated women, and they walk this way under the duress of a husband or someone else. And recently I heard the following in my address: “To put on a hijab means to show off your attitude to religion. Keep your religious preferences with you, the main thing is God in your soul. ”

My beloved mother does not wear a hijab, and she will probably never wear it again. Sis is a model and clever, and friends and colleagues wear a variety of clothes. I am not interested in what my employee is wearing if he is a conscientious person. My decision to “wrap myself up” is very personal, which I don’t want to publicly discuss, but I can publicly declare that I will never allow insulting a woman just because she wears a hijab. Indeed, for a woman who voluntarily put on a hijab or a scarf is not just an accessory, it is an inner attitude, it is her “I”. Removing a scarf is like publicly undressing. In my opinion, a woman, like a man, still needs to be judged not by clothing, but by behavior and attitude towards people.

The woman in the hijab is not a nun, not a saint, not an angel. She is the same woman as everyone.

Mavluda, 57 years old:

– By education I am a philologist, I worked in state institutions, I always wore only European clothes, but when I put on my headscarf, they didn’t hire me anywhere. Nobody needed my head in a headscarf, although I was considered a good specialist. The most interesting thing is that the attitude to me, dressed in European style, was much better, they called me “muallima”, and now the attitude is completely different – neglectful.

Seven or eight years ago, we were visiting relatives in Kulyab and found out that the police detained the girls in satra who were waiting for “clients”. They were taken to the department and shamed: how can one stand on the “panel” in satra? The girls replied that customers so wanted. That’s the price of men screaming about the moral decline of modern women. On the streets of the city you can see girls in satra sitting on benches in an embrace with guys. Parents need to pay attention not only to the appearance of their daughters, but also to give them the right education. And then, probably, they have already decided: “Since my daughter wears a scarf, then I will go to heaven.”

But this question has a downside. I was extremely surprised by the opinion of some young guys – they are intolerant of those who do not pray or don’t wear a headscarf. For some reason, they decided that the prayers of a woman who does not wear satra are not accepted by the Almighty. And according to their understanding, if a woman is in satra, then she is decent in all respects, and if not, almost a harlot … Is it possible to judge people like that?

And the most incomprehensible thing for me is why women in satra are mockingly called “nuns”. And even people with higher education. Monasticism originated in Buddhism, then appeared in Christianity, this term has nothing to do with Islam. Now I live and work in Austria. In this European country, with a scarf on my head, they respect me first of all for my abilities.

Sitora, 39 years old

– I put on the hijab because my husband made me do it. I work in a beauty salon, communicate with people, plus, men work with me and my husband probably decided that no one would bother me in the hijab and all that. I obeyed my husband and put on. Moreover, my husband did not tell me that, together with a scarf, I must somehow change my life, I came to this myself. After I put on my headscarf, I began to read the fivefold prayer, began to notice all my sins that I commit during the day, and began to fast.

When I started wearing a hijab, almost the whole city wore it, and then they began to condemn it, forbid it, everyone around took off their scarves, and I couldn’t. By the way, my husband also changed, now he began to persuade me to take off the hijab and not cause problems for himself or him, but I told my husband: “No.”

I really have enough problems now because of the scarf, but fortunately I work in a private salon, and the hostess does not forbid me to put on a hijab, she just says, make sure that the salon does not suffer, and what do you go about – I’m all equally. Unfamiliar women often come up to me on the street and start to convince me that I should take off the hijab and put on a Tajik ruimole. If ruymol corresponded to what the Koran requires of me, I would gladly put it on, but this is not so. Moreover, all my sisters, daughters-in-law, girlfriends go to rimoles or don’t wear scarves at all, and they do not cause me any indignation, I do not urge anyone to wear a hijab, I just feel that I have to wear it myself.