Praising Assam's teen singer Nahid Afrin for standing up to a 'fatwa' asking her to stay away from performing in the public, the Shiv Sena today said such diktats sprang from a "medieval and pervert mindset." "The courage shown by Nahid has to be appreciated. But, appreciation alone is not enough.
All sections of the society need to come together and back her stand," the Sena said in an editorial in the party mouthpiece 'Saamana'. It said that 'fatwas' issued in Islamic countries have also proved to be irrelevant as women are working in the fields of theatre and cinema there. "Fatwas, which are a result of medieval and pervert mindset, have darkened the lives of women in Islam. Triple talaq has reduced women to mere maids and have rendered them helpless," the Sena said. "The Sena, along with nationalists, will surely back Nahid. But we are surprised at those who talk of freedom of speech and tolerance, have nothing to say about this incident," it said. Even Bollywood, that is the first to give its opinion does not speak anything for Nahid, the edit said. 16-year-old Nahid made her Bollywood singing debut for Sonakshi Sinha in 2016 film 'Akira'. The fatwa, issued earlier this week, asked the reality TV show 'Indian Idol' junior finalist to keep away from a music programme on March 25, saying that the event is "against Sharia". The diktat was circulated through pamphlets which was widely distributed among public across Hojai and Nagaon districts in central Assam. Printed in Assamese and carrying names of 46 clerics, organisations and individuals, the leaflets had asked Nahid to keep away from entertainment events saying they "corrupt" future generations and make them liable to "Allah's wrath". Nahid, however, has maintained that music is God's gift to her and she "will never bow to it (such warnings) and never leave singing." The Class X student from Assam is scheduled to participate in a music show to be held at Udali Sonai Bibi College in Lanka area of Nagaon district on March 25. Several prominent personalities from the minority community, students and ethnic organisations as well as ULFA faction in peace talks with the Centre, have condemned the 'fatwa' and urged Nahid to continue singing fearlessly.