Al-Azhar’s Fatwa International Center issued a statement earlier this week, stressing that in accordance with the teachings of the Holy Quran, Hijab is Wajib (obligatory), al-omah news website reported.
It added that the issue is not subject to Ijtihad (process of legal reasoning and hermeneutics through which the jurist-mujtahid derives or rationalizes law on the basis of the Quran and the Sunnah).
Referring to some claims that Hijab is not obligatory in Islam, the statement said no one has the right to oppose definite Quranic injunctions.
It stressed that those who are not experts in the field should not make statements about whether Hijab is necessary or not.
The center cited verses from the Holy Quran to remind everyone that Hijab is compulsory.
They included verse 31 of Surah Noor (24): “Tell the believing woman to cast down their eyes, guard their chastity, and not to show off their beauty except what is permitted by the law. Let them cover their breasts with their veils. They must not show off their beauty to anyone other than their husbands, father, father-in-laws, sons, step-sons, brothers, sons of brothers and sisters, women of their kind, their slaves, immature male servants, or immature boys,” and verse 59 of Surah al-Ahzab (33): “O Prophet! say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over-garments; this will be more proper, that they may be known, and thus they will not be given trouble; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.”
The issue of Hijab being Wajib has become a controversial topic in Egypt recently.