Iran intends “to organize and regulate” the use of motorcycles in Tehran and will “seriously deal” with those who have no motorcycle license, such as women.
Tehran’s Police Chief Brigadier General Hossein Rahimi announced the scheme on Sunday, saying that as of February 19, about 100 checkpoints will be set up across the city so no one can ride motorcycles in Tehran without a license.
The plan seems like a pretext to crack down on women who have been increasingly using motorbikes although it is frowned upon by the country’s hardliners while they are not even allowed to get driving licenses for motorcycles.
Law enforcement officials say riding motorbikes is illegal for women because according to law only men can apply for such licenses. They say any change in the regulations should be made in the parliament.
The country’s fundamentalists have also repeatedly expressed opposition to women riding bicycles, let alone motorcycles.
In 2017, Iranian media reported that two young women had been detained in Dezful in southwestern Iran after they were filmed riding a motorcycle.
In the same year, a female-only motorcycle track opened outside the capital as women have been allowed to practice on private circuits.