Farah Ann Abdul Hadi’s leotard continues to stir up controversy. The 21-year-old gymnast unknowingly put on a traditional leotard to participate in a gymnastics meet recently. But her joy at taking home six medals, including two golds, turned to shock when many Muslims on social media attacked Farah Ann Abdul.
Hadi’s leotard was considered to go against Islamic guidelines, reported the Independent.
But while Facebook blew up with attacks against the gymnast, a growing number of supporters questioned why Farah Ann Abdul, and not the other women on Hadi’s team who also wore leotards, was singled out. The harsh feedback focused on the way that the material of her exercise attire showed the shape of her body.
Senior Islamic cleric Perak Mufti Tan Sri Harussani Zakaria summed up the views of those against the Malaysian Muslim gymnast.
“If Muslim women want to participate in gymnastics, they have to find outfits which cover the ‘aurat’ and this, in turn, might not be suitable for the sport,” argued the cleric.
In contrast, Malaysia’s minister for youth and sports, Khairy Jamaluddin, defended the 21-year-old on social media.
“In gymnastics Farah wowed the judges and brought home gold. In her deeds only the almighty judges her. Not you. Leave our athletes alone.”
“Empty cans make the most noise,” posted Farah Ann Abdul on social media.
As for supporters of Hadi, the leotard controversy has resulted in a new Facebook group, with 22,000 Likes to date. The gymnast has thanked those praising her talent for their support.
But those against the right of Farah Ann Abdul to wear her leotard in public continue to argue against Hadi, reported the Daily Mail.
And some felt that gymnastics should be banned for all Muslim women because of that leotard.
“Gymnastics is not for Muslim women,” insisted Harussani Zakaria. “It is clear that exposing one’s aurat and the shape of one’s body is haram (forbidden in Islam).”
And the leader of the National Muslim Youth Association’s female branch, Roszida Kamaruddin, offered a view that would allow Muslim women to participate in gymnastics but still banned Hadi’s leotard.
“Women should not be stopped from sports, but they must prioritize the Islamic codes in sports. Furthermore, there are many Muslim female athletes who succeed even by covering their aurat.”
As the controversy about Farah Ann Abdul continues, Hadi’s leotard looks like significant material compared to the bra worn by Tori Spelling that’s also blowing up social media, as the Inquisitr reported.
[Images via Farah Ann Abdul Hadi/Facebook]