Indian chess star snubs Iranian event over religious dress code

Indian chess star snubs Iranian event over religious dress code June 13, 2018

Woman Grandmaster and former world junior girls’ champion Soumya Swaminathan has refused to participate in the Asian Team Chess Championship in Iran later this year, saying ‘surely there is no place for an enforceable religious dress code in sports.’
Last week she used Facebook to break the news of her decision to pull out of the event which will be held in Hamadan, Iran, from July 26 to August 4 – and is now receiving many messages of support.

According to this report, this is not the first time an athlete pulled out of an event over the same issue. In 2016, top Indian shooter Heena Sidhu withdrew from the Asian Air Gun meet in Iran citing the same reason.

One of the many applauding her stand is Saurabh Navande, who wrote:

Good call Soumya! It’s so sad to know that players are being forced to follow Iranian laws! I feel sad that organizers did not think and understand that this could be a problem for so many sports women. You are already a winner Soumya! Good call on standing against such violation against human rights.

Hat tip: Gaurav Tyagi

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  • Brian Jordan

    Well done that woman!
    But oh, is she really an athlete and chess a sport? Surely that’s the business of muscle-bound flannelled fools and their ilk, not chess players. What next – poker players? Hedge-fund managers?

  • Johan

    BJ. Don’t spoil the story. The lady did real good. Pity Iranian women and all those equally subjugated cannot stand up for themselves in this way. Refuse to wear the Islamic body bag and you are likely to end up a pre wrapped freshly stoned dead body.
    I want to know how muslim men conduct autopsies on dead women. Is the the bloody battered corpse kept wrapped up and a keyhole autopsy conducted in order to preserve modesty and to prevent the officials getting themselves sexually aroused? Or is the autopsy done in a sexual frenzy by a slavering gang of zealots?
    Or don’t they bother with such and summarily toss the body into a hastily excavated shallow grave?

  • Angela_K

    Well done for making a stand against oppression. Unlike some footballer called Mo Salah who is now pals with the Chechen Gay killer, Ramzan Kadyrov.

  • Gaurav Tyagi

    The reality of the medieval desert war-lord. Paedophile Mo-ham-head;

  • barriejohn

    Johan: Good question. According to this site, “The bodies of women should not be dissected by anyone other than female doctors, unless there are none”. So, again, the rules are there to be broken!
    The poor student is also agonizing over whether his scientific drawings offend Allah. As an ex-fundie myself, I know exactly what torture he is putting himself through, and it’s appalling.
    “Allaah knows best”!

  • Italian Scallion

    Allah, like God knows nothing because the two bitches do not exist. Ban “ALL” religions as they are all evil.

  • John the Drunkard

    Why hold ANY international event or competition in a theocratic hell-hole? But then…the olympics have used disgraceful locations over and over.

  • Laura Roberts

    If I visit another country, I expect to follow their laws. If I don’t, they are well within their rights to apply whatever remedies they have in place. Hence, I won’t visit strict Muslim countries as I find many of their religious laws (sharia) abhorrent. Kudos to Ms. Swaminathan for applying this principle.
    The reverse also applies. When a Muslim (or Jew, or Christian, or Buddhist) visits my country, I expect them to abide by our laws or face the consequences. Any conflict with their religion is their problem and they can leave (or not come in the first place) if they don’t like it.

  • Dioigi

    This also happened in 2017 so why is Iran allowed to host chess championships again?

  • Ronny

    Money. Simple.

  • barriejohn

    If Russia is considered a suitable country to host the Football World Cup…
    (I was going to ask “Why are we even sending a team there?”, but I see that Ronny has conveniently provided the answer!)