You can be abused, spit on and asked to change your religion if you are Muslim in Quebec, an east-central province Canada. At least that is what Badia Senouci might have felt when she faced similar reaction at a shopping mall in the city.
If Ms Senouci is to be believed, she - along with her family - was verbally assaulted, while her son was spit on because of their religion. Her family was asked to change their religion by an older woman. Ms Senouci blames it all on the proposed value charter which asks the people of Quebec to get rid of any kind of prominent religious attire.
It was a couple of weeks ago when Ms Senouci and her family faced harsh insult on their religious faith. She replied to the insult of the woman that it was not her problem. She told her that she was free to accept any religion of her choice, and Islam is the one that suited her. The older woman instructed Ms Senouci to remove her hijab as the government would force her to do the same anyway.
Ms Senouci further added that her son Ahmed, 18, tried to intervene as he asked the woman not to insult her mother. He was spit on his face by the woman. It eventually led to a scuffle among them as the older woman hit Ms Senouci's son and husband and pretended to fall. The woman later reported to the police that Ms Senouci's family was responsible for the fall.
The police immediately took Ms Senouci's husband out with them for questioning. Abdelmalek Mansouri, her husband, asked the police to consult the security cameras to get the facts right. Mr Mansouri was allowed to leave with the police, along with the mall security, and watched the tape carefully.
According to the family, if anyone has to be blamed for the incident, it is the proposed charter of value. Mr Mansouri said that the woman who had attacked them was, in face, a victim of her ignorance. However, they believed that the real culprit was Pauline Marois and her government.
Watch a documentary on Hijab in Canada on YouTube (source: hijabdoc)