A Tehran pharmacy has been shut down due to its noncompliance with the mandatory hijab law and a criminal case filed against its female owner as Iran enters its fourth month of unrest sparked by the death in police custody of a young woman arrested for “improperly” wearing the hijab.

The head of the Mizan news agency, which is affiliated with the judiciary, wrote on Twitter on February 15 that the pharmacy was closed after “its owner disrespected the person who warned her to observe the hijab.”

In response, lawyer Ali Mojtahedzadeh wrote that “it is illegal to close a business on the pretext that one person does not observe the hijab.”

Last week, officials sent a letter to trade unions calling for stricter enforcement and adherence to the mandatory hijab in the capital’s stores and businesses.

According to the letter, a copy of which was obtained by RFERL’s Radio Farda, the order was issued to trade unions in the capital based on the Hijab and Chastity Law and with the aim of preventing the “spread of the habit of not wearing a hijab.”

Such acts of civil disobedience have increased in Iran, where the country’s Hijab and Chastity Law requires women and girls over the age of 9 to wear a head scarf in public.

In recent weeks, numerous reports have been published about the closing of businesses, restaurants, cafes, and in some cases pharmacies due to the owners’ and managers’ failure to observe Islamic laws and mandatory hijab rules.

Since the death in September of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, Iranians have flooded into the streets across the country to protest against a lack of rights, with women and schoolgirls putting up unprecedented shows of support in what is considered as one of the biggest threats to the Islamic government since the 1979 revolution.

In response, the authorities have launched a brutal crackdown on dissent, detaining thousands and handing down stiff sentences, including the death penalty, to protesters.

Source » rferl