In a new diktat, the Taliban have now directed all shopowners to not display the heads of female mannequins. An official in the Directorate of Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice in western Herat province in Afghanistan said posing and looking at the face of such mannequins is against the Islamic Sharia law and hence the heads of all such mannequins should be cut off.
The instruction comes a day after the group in Kabul issued guidance advising taxi drivers not to offer drive to unveiled women without close male relatives.
A number of shopkeepers in Herat raised concerns against the instructions and said that the Taliban are making their life more difficult with each passing day.
The shopkeepers said that they had bought each mannequin for $100-$200 and now they have to cut their heads off.
Ali Ahmad, one Herati shopkeeper, said, "Actually, these mannequins are my only belongings now, and now with this new order I have to cut their heads off. It is a great loss for me," as per the report.
In a further move restricting women's freedom in Afghanistan, the Taliban have said that women seeking to travel more than 72 km should not be offered transport unless they are accompanied by a close male relative.
An advisory distributed by the Taliban's Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice also directed all vehicle drivers to refrain from playing music in their cars, and not to pick up female passengers who do not wear an Islamic hijab covering their hair.
Ministry spokesman Mohammad Sadiq Akif confirmed the authenticity of the advisory on December 26.
A taxi driver in Kabul, who did not want to be named, said that for some time now armed Taliban men have been urging taxi drivers not to play music in their cars or take women without a hijab.
Exiled Afghan legal expert Haroun Rahimi criticised the Taliban's directive, saying it means taxi drivers will effectively be in a position to "police Afghan women's bodies and mobility", the report said.
Protests break out against new Taliban laws
Meanwhile, several dozen Afghan women on Tuesday protested against the new directives of the Taliban putting limitations on their movement. Women protestors said that the Islamic Emirate is keeping women away from society by imposing limitations and called for their rights to education, employment and social freedom to be honoured, reported Tolo News.
They used the slogans "we are the voice of hungry people" and "we are awake, we hate discrimination."
"How can we find a relative to go outside in urgent moments? They said 'we are not responsible for your food,' so pay our salaries and we can eat, we are not the women of two decades ago, we will not be silent," said Wida, a protestor, reported Tolo News.
The Islamic Emirate should not remove women from society, they said.
"We gathered to raise voices against restrictions imposed on women; our schools are closed, they took away working opportunities, now they ordered us not to go out of our homes alone, they are talking about the rights described by Islam. Does Islam order that a nation should be hungry, does Islam say to forbid girls from education?" said Shayesta, a protestor.
The protestors called on the international community to not ignore Afghan women.
"We are half of the society, we are human, we have the right to education and to work, I ask the international community to not recognize this government," said Zahra, a protestor.
The protest of Afghan women did not last a long time as the Islamic Emirate's forces fired into the air to disperse the protesters.
Meanwhile, the Taliban officials said that women can have rights based on Islamic regulations.
"The Islamic Emirate supreme leader, Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada, issued a decree on women which covers all (aspects of) women's lives," said Bilal Karimi, Deputy spokesman of Islamic Emirate.
(With inputs from agencies)