Following are excerpts from a sketch by niqab-clad women's TV channel, Maria TV, which aired on November 27, 2012.
Job applicant: Assalam Alykum and Allah's mercy.
Interviewer: Hi there.
Job applicant: Madam, I'm here to be interviewed for the position.
Interviewer: What degree do you have, girl?
Job applicant: I have a degree from the commerce department in English, and I came third in my class.
Interviewer: English?! Where did you learn your English? At a mosque or on the roof of your home?
Job applicant: Madam, I am educated, and I have a commerce degree in English. I did English courses, as well as computer courses. Madam, take a look at my credentials.
Interviewer: Sorry miss, we don’t hire women who wear the niqab.
Job applicant: Only women who wear the niqab?
Interviewer: We have open positions, and we need people and all, but we don't hire women who wear the niqab. Sorry.
Job applicant: Madam, you are hiring, and there are open positions, but you don't hire women wearing the niqab right?
Interviewer: That's right.
Job applicant: Why? Why exclude only women who wear in the niqab?
Interviewer: Look, this is our policy.
Job applicant: What has the woman wearing the niqab ever done? Is she a terrorist? She merely follows the law of Allah. She knows that Maria and the rest of the Prophet's wives wore the niqab. This is part of the Sunna, and some even consider it a duty...
Interviewer: Are you lecturing me?!
Job applicant: No. Have you ever asked yourself why a woman wearing the niqab wants to work?
Interviewer: This is our policy.
Job applicant: Madam, people look at my credentials...
Interviewer: I don't feel like it...
Job applicant: Check what courses I have completed. There are doctors, engineers, and lawyers among us. Why are we always rejected?
Interviewer: Listen, I might just hire you, but on one condition...
Job applicant: Go ahead, what is it?
Interviewer: Get that thing off your face.
Job applicant: Madam, I cannot. The niqab is a verified part of the Sunna. It was worn by the wives of the Prophet Muhammad. I am trying to please Allah. Many people say it is a duty, and you ask me to take it off so I can get work?
Interviewer: Can’t you see the sign here, girl? It says: “We seek good-looking women.” You consider yourself to be good-looking like that?
Job applicant: What are you asking of me? My clothes are clean, tidy, and ironed. It looks fine. What do you expect from me?
Interviewer: All this black you are wearing – it just won’t work. How will I [recognize] you? Will you be wearing a dotted niqab? A striped niqab? Will you stick a bow tie on your side? It’s impossible, girl.
Job applicant: Do you hear what you are saying? You are doing an injustice to a Muslim sister, who wants to work and has her own circumstances. She has children. I want to study, to raise my kids, and to help my parents. I want to work because I need the cash. Why am I not entitled to this, while others are?
Interviewer: We don’t have work for women wearing the niqab. If you want to work, take that thing off your face. End of discussion.
Job applicant: This is wrong.
Interviewer: Fair or not – I don’t care. That’s our policy.
Job applicant: So the women without a niqab outside may get the job?
Interviewer: Allah willing, they will.
Job applicant: Just because they do not wear the niqab?
Interviewer: This is not my concern.
Job applicant: God give me strength.