Saturday, July 10, 2010

Soccer girls

By Kashif-ul-Huda,

When FIFA World Cup Soccer Final match is played on Sunday, there will be at least a billion people will be watching it around the world. Going by the two pictures that I will present to you, some of these fans will be young Muslim girls of India.
First picture is from Indian state of Kerala. Soccer is huge in Kerala and not only boys but also girls get worked up for their teams. Brazil and Argentina are two most-favorite teams in Kerala. The picture is taken by Photographer Rahmath of Areekode in Kerala.

He took this picture in May of this year and appears to be two young boys’ teams dressed in Brazil and Argentina and fighting it out. Many girls in hijab are in attendance and watching the match with full attention. The ball is near the goal post and one can clearly see two girls with their arms fully extended in excitement. Few more girls are in the process of raising their arms in anticipation of their teams scoring a goal.
Second picture is by Amit Dave of Reuters and published in the Delhi edition of the Hindustan Times on June 25th. Photo taken in Ahmedabad, Gujarat is of students of a Muslim girls school Anjuman-e-Islam High School. If the previous picture was beautiful, this is priceless.

You can differentiate between two teams by the color of hijab that these girls are wearing. All the excitement of this game is in the foreground of the picture. It seems that a girl from the yellow team just wrested control of the ball from a player of the blue team. She is in full control of the ball now and her hands and face show this happy expression while feet firmly in control of the ball. The girl from the blue team is completely beaten but still hoping to get the ball back. But her attempt will be thwarted by the third girl, who is from yellow team and not afraid to play a bit rough. You can read mischief and happiness on her face as she tries to elbow out the girl from the blue team.
Most images of Muslims and especially Muslim girls that appear in media are in fairly stereotypical role and environment therefore it was a delight to see these picture which present Muslim girls in a very different light.

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