Rafiul Alom Rahman is a research scholar at the University of Texas at Austin. He has worked with the UN Women Multi-Country Office in New Delhi, and has been actively involved with the queer movement in India. His research interests include gender, sexuality, race & ethnicity, LGBT Muslims, folk music and school education in India.
I remember when my younger sister first started menstruating and would complain of cramps to my mother, she would always do it in hushed tones. Sanitary napkins would be wrapped in newspapers and kept out of the sight of male folks in the house. The lack of information around sexual and reproductive health meant that my siblings and I were at best ignorant and took our mother's way as the norm.
The plains belt of the West Garo Hills remains one of the most neglected regions in Meghalaya. Housing two non-reserved constituencies -- Phulbari and Rajabala -- the region is marred by wide-scale unemployment, poor educational and health indicators, unchecked crimes such as kidnapping and extortion, and river erosion-induced displacement triggered every year by floods in the Brahmaputra…
A conversation around everything that is wrong with mainstream Islamic scholarship and Muslim religious scholars around the world has now been hijacked by a Hindu right-wing government and its blind followers. All that we are left with is an utterly flawed debate around Zakir Naik.