Khatija Rahman was responding to criticism on her choice of clothing, and asked Taslima Nasrin to Google the meaning of ‘true feminism’
A.R. Rahman’s daughter Khatija has responded to Bangladeshi-Swedish writer Taslima Nasrin’s comments on the former’s choice of clothing on social media.
Earlier this month, the writer tweeted that she felt ‘suffocated’ whenever she looked at pictures of Rahman’s daughter. Sharing a photo of Khatija covering her face with a niqab, she posted, “It is really depressing to learn that even educated women in a cultural family can get brainwashed very easily!”
It was only last year that Rahman faced criticism for the same issue, and the composer responded stating that women in his family were free to wear whatever they wanted to. The Academy Award-winning music director shared a photograph of his wife and two daughters, along with the hashtag ‘FreedomToChoose’.
Now, after Taslima Nasrin’s post, Khatija herself took to her Instagram profile to reply to the writer: “Been only a year and this topic is in the rounds again… there’s so much happening in the country and all people are concerned about is the piece of attire a woman wants to wear. Wow, I’m quite startled. Every time this topic comes the fire in me rages and makes me want to say a lot of things..Over the last one year, I’ve found a different version of myself which I haven’t seen in so many years. I will not be weak or regret the choices I’ve made in life. I am happy and proud of what I do and thanks to those who have accepted me the way I am. My work will speak, God willing… I don’t wish to say any further.”
Khatija, who is a social worker, Director and Trustee of the A R Rahman Foundation, as well as a musician-singer, added, “Dear Taslima Nasreen, I’m sorry you feel suffocated by my attire. Please get some fresh air, cause I don’t feel suffocated rather I’m proud and empowered for what I stand for. I suggest you google up what true feminism means because it isn’t bashing other women down nor bringing their fathers into the issue. I also don’t recall sending my photos to you for your perusal.”
In her next post, Khatija said she was overwhelmed by the love and support of people on social media and thanked them. “I request you all not to abuse or make any hate speech against Ms. Taslima. Lets strive to become a broad minded society in accepting the choices our fellow human beings make and also remember Ms. Taslima in our prayers and not judge her for the choices she’s made in life. Peace,” she concluded.
Finally, before posting a picture with her dad and sister Rahmeen at Baku in Azerbaijan, titling it, “Peaceful time with family away from ‘suffocation’”, Khatija also shared a picture of a burqa-clad woman, writing, “Why the double standards and sudden concerns only when it comes to women belonging to a certain faith? Haven’t we seen men wearing turbans? Women wearing habits ? Why only when it comes to a particular faith are women targeted for the choices they make wholeheartedly and with pride. Why ? Why ? And why ? I simply do not understand.”