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|World Hijab Day|
World Hijab Day poster from 2016
World Hijab Day is an annual event founded by Nazma Khan in 2013. The event takes place on February 1st each year in 140 countries worldwide. Its stated purpose is to encourage women of all religions and backgrounds to wear and experience the hijab. Event organizers describe it as an opportunity for non-Muslim women to experience the hijab.
Feminist activist Asra Nomani says "as Muslim women, we actually ask you not to wear the hijab in the name of interfaith solidarity," going on to say, "This modern-day movement spreads an ideology of political Islam."
The political commentator Maajid Nawaz accuses the day as being a "well-financed effort by conservative Muslims to dominate modern Muslim societies," and says that the event spreads the "misleading interpretation" that the head covering is always worn voluntarily, and that "hijab" purely means headscarf. He also described the event as "worse than passé," suggesting that the name be changed to "Hijab is a Choice Day".
In 2018, Canadian human-rights campaigner Yasmine Mohammed started a #NoHijabDay campaign in response, to celebrate the women who have defied social censure and the state to remove the hijab. She says
No Hijab Day is a day to support brave women across the globe who want to be free from the hijab. Women who want to decide for themselves what to wear or what not to wear on their heads. Women who fight against either misogynist governments that will imprison them for removing their hijab or against abusive families and communities that will ostracize, abuse and even kill them.