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By now, many of you would have heard of or seen the documentary ‘To Light A Candle’ by Maziar Bahari. This documentary highlights the persecution of Baha’is in Iran, and focuses in particular on the denial of their right to an education.
To Light a Candle is a film about the triumph of knowledge over intolerance.
The Baha’is are Iran’s largest religious minority. They are persecuted because of their faith, and barred from teaching and studying at university.
But Baha’is do teach, and do study.
The Baha’i Institute for Higher Education (BIHE) was established in 1987 to give young Baha’is a chance to pursue knowledge and receive a quality education The informal courses take place in people’s homes, via mail correspondence, and with online lectures. The Iranian government regularly raids BIHE classes and arrests its students and teachers. Hundreds of Baha’is have been jailed simply for teaching and studying at BIHE. Yet, many Muslim Iranians support the right of the Baha’is to higher education and fight for the full enjoyment of civil and human rights by all Baha’is.
Maziar Bahari’s To Light a Candle is a hopeful story of the BIHE and Iran. In 2015 the film sparked the global Education Is Not A Crime campaign for universal access to higher education.
The last Friday of every February will be celebrated as Education is not a Crime day. The campaign has been endorsed by a string of Nobel laureates and other prominent figures around the world. 1
For those of you who haven’t had a chance to see it, or would like to watch it again with friends, the movie has now been made available via Vimeo on Demand. You can purchase a download here.
You can also listen to this fascinating interview with Maziar Bahari (conducted by CBC) here.
- Taken from the official website – educationisnotacrime.me
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