Women can go on Haj without male escort

PM Narendra Modi said his government had removed a discriminatory practice where Muslim women were allowed to travel for Haj only in the company of a ‘mahram’ or male guardian.

Wondering how such “injustice” was being rendered to Muslim women for decades, Modi said, “Our ministry of minority affairs issued corrective measures and we ameliorated this restriction by phasing out a tradition that had been in practice for the past 70 years.”

“Today, Muslim women can perform Haj without ‘mahram’ and I am happy to note this time about 1,300 Muslim women have applied to perform Haj without mahram,” the PM said in his monthly radio address ‘Mann Ki Baat’.

Noting that such a restriction was not prevalent in many Islamic countries, Modi said, “When I first heard about it, I wondered how it could be possible. Who would have drafted such rules? Why this discrimination? And when I went into the depth of the matter I was surprised to find that even after 70 years of our independence, we were the ones who had imposed these restrictions.”

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