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Malaysian actress berated for going bald

Sharifah Amani Syed Zainal Rashid has attracted criticism from influential muftis after she shaved her head for a film role.

world Updated: Jun 14, 2007 16:26 IST

An award-winning Malaysian actress who shaved her head for a film role has attracted criticism from influential muftis who say her act is unIslamic and sinful, a report said on Thursday.

Sharifah Amani Syed Zainal Rashid, 21, drew widespread shock and interest after she went bald on Tuesday, with photos of her splashed across the front pages of Malay-language newspapers a day later.

But muftis in the conservative Muslim country have called on authorities to issue guidelines to prevent Malay Muslim artistes, especially actresses, from extreme behaviour or dressing, the New Straits Times reported.

"Unlike Muslim men, going bald for women is forbidden in Islam. It is sinful for men to act or behave like a woman and vice versa," the mufti of central Selangor state, Mohamad Tamyis Abdul Majid was quoted as saying.

The mufti of northern Perak state, Harussani Idris, said Muslim artistes were becoming increasingly daring and warned them against being influenced by the actions of their foreign counterparts.

"As Muslims, we should not sacrifice our religion for the sake of wanting to be popular," Harussani was quoted as saying.
"I have been observing that nowadays our artistes are becoming too open and daring, either in their actions or attire," he said.

"It is only appropriate for the relevant authorities such as the information ministry to introduce regulations to make them toe the line.

First Published: Jun 14, 2007 15:48 IST