Indian chess star refuses to wear headscarf, pulls out of event in Islamic Republic of Iran

Woman Grandmaster and former world junior girls’ champion Soumya Swaminathan has refused to participate in the Asian Team Chess Championship, to be held in Hamadan, Iran, from July 26 to August 4, because of the compulsory-headscarf rule in the country which she said violated her personal rights. She took to her Facebook page to say, “I find the Iranian law of compulsory Headscarf to be in direct violation of my basic Human Rights including my right to freedom of expression, and right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion. It seems that under the present circumstances, the only way for me to protect my rights is not to go to Iran.” She further said that the religious dress codes should not be imposed on players.

“I understand the organisers expecting us to wear our National Team Dress or Formals or Sporting attire for our games during official championships, but surely there is no place for an enforceable religious dress code in Sports,” she added….

Here is what Soumya Swaminathan wrote on her Facebook page about her decision.

“I am very sorry to state that I have asked to be excused from the Indian Women’s team for the forthcoming Asian Nations Cup ( Asian Team ) Chess Championship 2018, to be held at Iran from 26 July – 4 Aug 2018, as I do not wish to be forced to wear a Headscarf or Burkha. I find the Iranian law of compulsory Headscarf to be in direct violation of my basic Human Rights including my right to freedom of expression, and right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. It seems that under the present circumstances, the only way for me to protect my rights is not to go to Iran.

via Indian chess star refuses to wear headscarf, pulls out of event in Islamic Republic of Iran

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