Mahram is a male relative of a woman with whom she is permanently forbidden to marry by Islam. Modi said in his ‘Mann Ki Baat’ that his government had removed the restriction which allows Muslim women to perform Hajj only in the company of ‘Maharam’. He had stated that injustice was done to women for decades.
I rejected Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s claim that he had facilitated Muslim women’s travel for Haj without mahram, but regulation by Hajj authorities of Saudi Arabia was in force for many years which allow women above the age of 45 years to perform Hajj without a ‘Mahram’ if they travel with a group.
He told reporters here that women above 45 years of age from Indonesia, Malaysia and several other countries had been performing Hajj under this Saudi regulation.
If Modi is really concerned about Muslim women, he should provide 7 per cent reservation for them in education, he should do justice to Zakia Jafri, widow of former MP Ehsan Jafri, who was killed in the 2002 Gujarat riots.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)