In Indonesia, a special force of women come together to fight a societal issue in the uprise: The Niqab Squad! Founded by Indadari Mindrayanti, a face-veiled team of women come together to shatter stereotypes surrounding the niqab to change people’s perception.
“My Niqab, My Choice”
For those who might be unfamiliar with a niqab: the niqab is a full-face veil that some Muslim women choose to observe. It is an extremely discussed topic in our present climate; filled with debates and discussions occurring all over the world. Some countries, such as France, already banned the full-face veil in public places.
The Niqab Squad is Representing Muslim Woman and Their Niqab
In 2016, Indadari Mindrayanti decided to wear the face veil after wearing the hijab. Her decision to wear the face veil was not easily supported within her own family, even among people on the Indonesian streets, who would stare at her, which is noteworthy since Indonesia is predominantly a Muslim country.
Later in 2017, she visited France, for a skin condition treatment. A trip easily became one of the most challenging experiences for her, as she noticed how people’s eyes followed her trail, rendering her extremely uncomfortable. People’s intolerance of her choice to observe the niqab engendered her to create a platform. That same year, Mindrayanti founded “Niqab Squad” with the goal to generate awareness among the public but also create unity between woman observing the niqab.
A Platform Where Niqab-Wearing Woman Come Together to Be Themselves
Indadari Mindrayanti encourages niqab-wearing women to come together and try any activity that they previously felt reluctant to do. That’s why the group arranges several activities, such as archery, horse riding, business workshops, pre-marriage seminars, fundraisers, and Quran recitation as well.
As a platform, the Niqab Squad aims to dispel stereotypes that suggest that Muslim women are seen as insignificant or incapable of doing much because of the veil they choose to wear. Mindrayanti hopes that people will understand that niqabis specifically can be anything from lawyers, engineers, doctors, artists to martial arts practitioners. She aspires that people will see their religious choices in a positive light and be more tolerant of them. I, for sure, hope that Mindrayanti gets the success she deserves in her endeavours!