A leading state-run health facility in Dhaka banned burqas for its female staff on Monday and enforced strict uniform regulations to prevent growing incidents of theft of mobiles and wallets at the hospital wards.
"We have just enforced the regulation asking women staff to wear the prescribed hospital uniform and carry ID cards while they are on duty inside the patients wards," Abdul Majid Bhuiyan, administrative director of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, the largest hospital of Bangladesh, told PTI.
He said the order was issued for the female staff only against the backdrop of growing incidents of theft of wallets or mobile phones particularly from female and children wards. In most of the cases, the outsider women identifying them as hospital staff, were found to be involved in the thefts.
"This part of the disciplinary measures also to ensure hygienic standards of the facility...The female staffs are allowed to use the burqas outside the (hospital) wards," he said.
Bhuiyan, however, added that the visitors or patients were "in no way" come under the purview of the order.
Despite being a Muslim-dominated country, a small number of women in Bangladesh wear burqas.