Women in Afghanistan Stare at a Dark Future as Taliban Gains Control

“Feels like a bird who makes a nest, and helplessly watches others destroy it.”

Amisha Singh

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“They will kill us. Women have no rights”. These are the words of a woman who landed in India from Kabul on Sunday, as the Taliban took control of the whole of Afghanistan, now declaring it as the ‘Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’.

Unlike her, who managed to seek refuge in India, over 18 million girls and women in the country now stare at a dark future built over their dashed hopes and dreams, as the Taliban starts issuing horrifying regressive diktats rolling back decades of progression made by women in the country.

It is a reminder of the dark past that women saw during the terrorist group’s reign in 1996–2001 when stark rules were imposed based on the Islamic Sharia Law – which meant women could not work, had to cover their faces in public, had to always be accompanied by a male relative if they wanted to leave their homes, and girls were banned from attending school.

The Taliban’s ‘Rules’ for Women:

  • Women should not be seen on the street unattended without a blood relative or a burka.
  • Since no man should hear a woman’s footsteps, high-heeled shoes should not be worn by women.
  • A woman’s voice should not be heard by a stranger when she is speaking loudly in public.
  • In order to prevent women from being seen from the street, all windows on the ground and first floors of residential buildings should be painted over or covered with a screen.
  • Women are prohibited from having their pictures taken, filmed, or displayed in newspapers or books or in stores, or at home.
  • To remove the word “women” from any place’s name.
  • Women are not allowed to appear on their balconies.
  • Women are prohibited from appearing on radio, television, or in any public gathering.
  • Women would be stoned to death if accused of adultery.

This dark past has now, unfortunately, become the new reality for the tens of thousands of Afghan women who live in areas recently…

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