[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]


[Newspaper:] Ettelaat

[Date:] 28 Esfand 1335 [19 March 1957]


Letter from Ayatollah Behbahani to the Prime Minister Regarding Women’s Participation in the Elections

Ayatollah Behbahani has sent the following letter to the Prime Minister:

The esteemed Prime Minister,

Of course, Your Honour is aware that all laws passed by the parliament should not be against the holy Islamic jurisprudence, and any law that is against the holy Islamic jurisprudence is not lawful. In the penultimate session of the Senate, this matter has been neglected or ignored. In an apparently artificial and positional move, the involvement of women in both stages, the right to vote and the right to be elected, has been adopted. This issue has caused anxiety and concern in different classes of the society, especially the clergy in the capital and other places. It is necessary for the esteemed cabinet to realize that the interference of women in any stages of municipal or parliamentary elections is prohibited in the holy sharia, and the law that prescribes their interference is not legal, according to the constitution. Two years ago, fatwa[1] were issued by religious authorities in this regard and of course, the cabinet refrained from carrying out this illegal act.

Mohammad al-Musawi al-Behbahani,



[1] [Fatwa:  A legal opinion or decree handed down by an Islamic religious leader]