A member of the Cultural Commission of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, Hossein Jalali, told the media that the government was planning to punish women who refuse to wear hijabs (headscarves) in public by freezing their bank accounts. The government's plans are mirroring a technique used by Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to suppress civil liberties protesters.
Jalali said that “unveiled persons” would get a text message telling them to respect the law, then enter a “warning phase,” and eventually have their bank accounts frozen.
“In the third stage, the bank account of the unveiled person may be frozen,” Jalali said.
He did not explain what he meant by “warning stage.” But he hinted that morality police would not be involved. Other public figures said surveillance cameras equipped with artificial intelligence would be used to identify offenders.
There have been protests in Iran against the hijab law since September, after the death of Mahsa Amini following her arrest for not wearing a hijab.
The threat of freezing bank accounts is the same as what happened in Canada after Trudeau's government invoked the Emergencies Act to quash the Freedom Convoy protests. Many of those who participated in or supported the protests had their bank accounts frozen.
The threat of having bank accounts frozen to comply with the law highlights the ? risks of CBDCs. In Nigeria, for example, the government banned ATM withdrawals of more than $4,500 to force people to use the ? unpopular CBDC, the eNaira.