Chess star Soumya Swaminathan boycotts event in Iran over hijab law
Indian chess star Soumya Swaminathan is boycotting the upcoming championship in Iran in protest at having to wear an Islamic headscarf or hijab. The former world junior girls champion said in a Facebook post that the dress code at the Asian Nations Chess Cup starting next month violated her rights. Under Iranian law, women can only show their face, hands and feet and are supposed to wear only modest colours and wear the hijab in public places. Swaminathan criticised chess officials for allotting events to countries without taking players’ rights into account.