Imam refused Muslimah to pray in the mosque

24th Dec 2014
Imam refused Muslimah to pray in the mosque

Masuma Rahim

It is, as a rule, easy to be Muslim in London. Generally, we are free to wear, do and be what we like. Halal food is plentiful and places to pray are not usually difficult to come by.

For some years, I have been using the West End Mosque and Islamic Centre in Soho. An odd place, some might say, for a mosque, but it was certainly an asset to the area.

Centrally-located and large, it welcomed anyone who wished to use it. I frequently did so, as did a number of my friends. Until recently, that is. For as I wandered in one Saturday afternoon, I was accosted by the Imam, who told me that I was not allowed to pray there. I asked why: he told me that there were no facilities.

I pointed out that the mosque had four floors and that, from the absence of shoes in the foyer, it was empty apart from two people, one of whom was the Imam. Again, I was told I couldn’t pray; this time, I was informed that the management had decided that women were no longer allowed to do so and that I had to go to another mosque.

Indicating my luggage (I was due to catch a long-distance train within half an hour) I said that sunset was not far off and that I had no time to walk the two-mile round trip to the nearest mosque and back. I promised to pray quickly and to be on my way, but to no avail. I was escorted out and, in consequence, was unable to pray.

I was, obviously, furious. I have prayed in offices and hospital; parks and churches. I have never had any difficulty in doing so and, often, people are very accommodating (I have always found churchwardens particularly welcoming). But, in London, in 2014, I can be stopped from using a mosque because of my sex. It is an outrage. But it seems there’s nothing that can be done. The Muslim Council of Britain does not regulate mosques. The National Sharia Council has no power to do so. The mosque in question was not, as far as I can gather, a registered charity, so isn’t contravening charity law. My attempts to contact the management of the centre have been fruitless.

There is nothing, it seems, to stop a mosque discriminating against half the population. Quite aside from the theological requirement to pray at an appointed time, there is an issue of equality here. I wouldn’t expect a mosque to deny entry to someone based on their age or nationality so why is it acceptable to discriminate on the basis of sex? Islam came to create equity between men and women; to demonstrate that neither was superior to the other. 1400 years later, we appear to have regressed in quite a spectacular fashion.

10 Responses to “Imam refused Muslimah to pray in the mosque”

FAROOKDecember 24, 2014



NaseemDecember 29, 2014

The issue here is this practice remains common. Majority of the men silently collude with this behaviour.

It’s not only women that are kept out but disabled people also. Think of the many mosques with steps, narrow abolition facilities and tiny cubicles for toilets.

To top it all jahel mullahs from all nationalities remain in charge of places of worship.

We owe it ourselves to speak out and openly challenge and protest against discriminatory practices. But I forget we are meant to be victims of a global conspiracy!


DeeJanuary 5, 2015

I am distressed to hear that a place of worship seems immune to simple sex discrimination laws. This behaviour would be unacceptable in a supermarket so it so much worse when it affects a persons fundamental rights to freedom of religious expression and worship. You can find advice on how to deal with this Imam and the Mosques inappropriate behaviour at the following website.

Please do not allow these bigots to treat you or anyone else in this way.


khairulJanuary 15, 2015

a very disappointed indeed, if this is true. Mosque should be open for all. this explain why the Ummah under lots of attack today. lack of proper understanding, narrow minded and refuse to further studies led to ignorance and arrogance attitude.


ThaliaJanuary 19, 2015

such a poor situation. unbelievable, it should be clear to any muslim that islam is a tolerating religion. It’s one thing to not allow women to pray there it’s another thing completely to refuse them salaat when they are in complete need to do it. this go against what is taught in islam and to think the imam himself that did this is beyond understanding.


TahirJanuary 21, 2015

Strange, my daughter prayed here with me and they do have a women’s section. Maybe a change of management? Not acceptable of course though.


Riyadh RiyadhFebruary 24, 2015

Unbelievable, the imam in charge a mosque should have more knowledge than this, I am speechless


mickMarch 1, 2015

Hahaha when it suits muslims they complain there not being treated equally in the uk and now they complain about there own church well the uk like most countries are governed for the people regardless of religion we are all governed by the same laws. OH and they have a women section that alone should be illegal women and men should pray together in any church no segregation. What ever country you come from and chose to live here we all should enjoy the riches of this great land and its great people.


zakariya yusufMarch 18, 2015

Dear mic , are we really governed by the same laws , when irish people could not vote in northern ireland , these irish people were uk nationals . So I think your a bit of a muppet really the British in northern ireland are still moaning abs complaint . Why does the world call the you the whinging poms .


Ian Barnettt.March 23, 2015

I do love this video. Just goes to show how dangerous your mosques are.

G-d is indeed great.

Enjoy! :-)


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