Militants attempt ''Talibanisation'' of Kashmir
8 August 2001
The Times of India
Srinagar: Some pro-Pakistan militant outfits have formulated dress codes for Kashmiris which are more severe on women than men. According to the dress code, women have to be clad in burqa when they move around in public places. And the militants are eager to enforce the code. On Tuesday, some unknown men poured chemicals on two young girls for violating the code and left instructions asking women to follow the dressing norms strictly. Reports from south Kashmir say posters seeking strict observance of purdah have been pasted at several places. The graffiti bear the seal of the Laskhar-e-Taiba. The posters ask men to wear kameez-shalwar instead of trousers and grow beard. The Laskhar has neither denied or confirmed its hand in the display of such posters at Shopian, Pulwama, and Anantnag. According to sources, principals of about a dozen women colleges have received militant threats. The college authorities have been asked to follow a particular type of uniform. The principal of Government Women''s College, M A Road, Anees Fatima, when contacted, expressed her ignorance about any such diktat. Similarly, Prof. Shameem Ahmad, principal of Vishwa Bharati Women''s College Downtown also refused being approached by the militants with such instructions. However, many anxious parents told the Times News Network that their wards wear the burqa or Abhayia as asked by the college. For now, burqa prices have soared.