An Iranian lawmaker, involved in drafting Iran’s controversial new compulsory hijab bill, claims it is “compassionate” in nature.

The bill, imposing severe punishments on women and girls for not wearing the mandated hijab, has previously been described by UN experts as constituting “gender apartheid.”

“It’s crucial for the public to recognize that the approach in the legislation has been gentle from its inception,” said Mehdi Bagheri.

The bill, officially titled “Protection of Family Through Promotion of Hijab and Chastity Culture,” initially secured parliamentary approval in September 2023.

Encountering an unexpected setback, the proposal faced rejection from the Guardian Council, which holds ultimate legislative authority. The council cited alleged formal deficiencies and called for revisions to clarify ambiguous terms.

The regime’s focus on the country’s hijab law comes amidst numerous reports of Iranian women refusing to adhere to the regime’s Islamic dress code after nationwide protests in 2022 erupted, following the the killing of Mahsa Jina Amini in the custody of so-called morality police for reportedly not wearing her hijab properly. The months-long protests marked the largest uprising since the establishment of the Islamic Republic in 1979.

Highlighting an intensifying trend of harsh penalties against women, the bill proposes travel restrictions and other methods of punishment.

Bagheri, whose political influence has waned in recent elections, also proposed that under the latest version of the “hijab and chastity” bill, judges could impose penalties such as hindering promotions or initiating temporary or permanent dismissals from service for female employees.

Bagheri also emphasized the possibility of imprisonment for women resisting the compulsory hijab.

Senior figures and clerics in the Iranian regime have continued to stress the significance of enforcing the compulsory hijab for women – with many arguing that it is one of the main pillars of the Islamic Republic.

Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei labeled it a “religious duty” on April 3, condemning any attempts to challenge its enforcement within Iran. Khamenei attributed such challenges to external influences aimed at undermining societal norms regarding hijab, emphasizing that even women not adhering to Sharia law are obligated to observe compulsory hijab.

Source » iranintl