The Islamabad High Court on Monday banned Valentine’s Day celebrations in public spaces across Pakistan, reported Dawn. The order came a day before Valentine’s Day when the court was hearing a plea filed by one Abdul Waheed.
Meanwhile, Indonesian authorities have prohibited students from celebrating Valentine’s Day in Muslim-majority areas of the country and have confiscated condoms, saying the celebration was against their culture and promotes casual sex, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
The Islamabad court warned all print and electronic media to immediately stop any promotion related to Valentine’s Day and ordered the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority to monitor whether all mediums were following the order or not.
In his petition, Waheed had said that Valentine’s Day celebrations were against “Islamic teachings” and hence should be banned immediately. In the name of love, “immorality, nudity and indecency is being promoted, which is against our rich traditions and values,” the petition read, according to Geo TV.
Ahead of Valentine’s Day last year, Pakistan President Mamnoon Hussain had urged citizens to refrain from celebrating the day as it was not part of Muslim traditions, but of the West. “Valentine’s Day has no connection with our culture and it should be avoided,” he had said, adding that everyone must maintain their religious and national identity.
In 2016, the Peshawar district assembly had passed a unanimous resolution to impose a ban on Valentine’s Day celebrations in the district. Khalid Waqas Chamkani, member of the Jamaat-e-Islami party, had alleged that some people “inspired” by western culture were “trying to destroy the foundations” of Muslim culture by celebrating the day.
The Jamaat-e-Islami party also proposed to mark February 14 as World Haya (modesty) Day to give due respect to women “instead of making them objects of desire”, Hindustan Times had reported.