While women athletes are winning laurels at the Olympics, there are some women who aren’t even allowed to visit the stadium to watch their country play, leave alone compete in the Olympics.
As shocking as it may sound, Iran does not allow its women into their stadiums to enjoy all-male sports matches ever since the Iranian Revolution in 1979.
But women won’t just sit back and stay mum over this joke of a restriction imposed on them.
And, so, Iranian women rights activist Darya Safai, has been protesting against this age-old discrimination for two years now. She has now taken her protest to Rio Olympics, where she held a banner saying, “Let Iranian Women Enter Their Stadiums” during a volleyball match between Iran and Egypt.
Many Iranian men spectators booed and yelled insults at her. But nothing they did dampened her spirit. Even when security personnel asked her to step out of the stadium owing to the International Olympics Committee guidelines banning any kind of political statements at the games, she didn’t budge one inch.
She told them, “I am so sorry. What I am fighting for is for the right for Iranian women to be at matches. It is my right to be here. It is the basic right of Iranian women.” The staff gave up and left her to hold her banner high throughout the game even though her arms were shivering.
Her determination and willpower is truly commendable and all we have is huge respect for her!
More power to you, Darya. We need more women like you.
Feature Image Source: Twitter