The Origin of The International Purple Hijab Day
2/12/2013 3:00 PM
By Sr. Hadayai Majeed,
I was so shocked when I heard the news of Aasiya Zubair's murder four years ago. I was watching TV when the announcement came on CNN. For about five minutes I felt my den literally spin like in the movies. When an event is so traumatic it is unbelievable.
I had worked with Muzzamil on several promotional projects for Bridges TV. He always spoke so fondly of his wife. He spoke about her at presentations giving her most of the credit for getting the TV station started (idea and money). No clue he had a sinister dark side. I felt so bad the first few days immediately after the news broke I became physically ill. We were discussing (a group of us) how to have a time and way to reflect on domestic abuse (before Sr. Aasiya's murder) that would be truly Islamic. So many Muslims were complaining that we should not be so involved with the non-Muslims coping what they are doing, etc. Although we did not agree and were not going to sever our ties in the domestic violence awareness movement we did see a need for some way to have a program or event that would be uniquely Islamic.
Since her (Sr. Aasiya's) murder happened around Valentine's Day we decided to try putting a call out for people to identify that day with survivors of domestic abuse. We thought adopting the color of the movement (purple) and calling it International Purple Hijab Day would be simple and easy for most people to accept. Now four years later many people (Muslim and non-Muslim) around the globe observe the second Saturday in February as a time for prayer, hosting activities/workshops around the issue of domestic abuse. The other day quite by accident I found out that a huge masjid in Ireland had observed it last year with a very elaborate program. Also I found out this morning that an Ethiopian sister painted the doorway to her humble home purple and wore a purple hijab last year as her way of observing the day. Her photo is shared here.