Burkas
A leading Islamic school appears to have prohibited posting photos online AFP/Getty

One of India's top Islamic schools has banned Muslims from posting pictures of themselves on social media, IBTimes India has reported.

The Darul Uloom Deoband – which founded the globally influential Deobandi movement – has issued a fatwa banning Muslims from uploading pictures of themselves and others to sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The school, founded in 1866, has its own social media presence and did not make clear what devout Muslims should do to the hundreds, possibly thousands, of images that they may have already posted before the fatwa came into place.

Earlier this month the Darul Uloom Deoband issued a fatwa banning Muslim women from cutting their hair and plucking their eyebrows.

Deobandism is an ultra-conservative strand of Islam opposed to reform and modernisation. About 20% of Indian Muslims are Deobandis.

According to IBTimes India, the part of the school charged with instructing worshippers about ethical behaviour – the Darul Ifta – was asked about uploading photos to social media in a written question from a follower.

The Darul Ifta said such behaviour was not Islamic, thereby effectively banning all adherents from posting their selfies and other snaps on any of the world's many social platforms.

The Deobandi sect has been hugely influential in Europe and is believed to control nearly half of all UK mosques. Deobandis have conservative attitudes towards Western popular culture and the role of women.

Speaking after the recent ban on eyebrow plucking, head of the Darul Ifta Maulana L. Sadiq Qasmi said: "Muslim women should stay away from beauty parlours as Islam does not permit them to have make-up attracting other male members.

"Like Muslim men are not allowed to shave under Islam, eyebrow trimming, hair-cutting and make-up like wearing lipstick, etc is also banned."

Darul Uloom Deoband
Deobandism was founded at Darul Uloom Deoband Wiki Commons