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RS condemns removal of Sikhs` turbans overseas

Last Updated: Wednesday, December 7, 2011 - 16:17

New Delhi: The Rajya Sabha on Wednesday condemned the
incidents of forcing Sikhs to remove their turbans in the name
of security, particularly in Italy.

Deputy Chairman K Rahman Khan joined the members during
Zero Hour in condemning the recent incidents where disrespect
has been shown to Sikhs` turbans.

The issue was raised by Shiromani Akali Dal member Naresh
Gujral, who referred to the latest incident involving Jet
Airways commander Ravijodh Singh at Milan airport.

"The entire House joins in condemning this incident and
this should be conveyed to the government," Khan said.

Gujral said Sikhs are being publicly humiliated and the
community is outraged.

"This has outraged the entire Sikh community worldwide,"
he said, seeking the government`s intervention in checking the
recurrence of such incidents.

He said the Government should urgently summon the Italian
Ambassador and convey to him in unequivocal terms the anger of
the community over the matter.

"The government has to ensure that the brave Sikhs are not
insulted again and again," he said.

Terming the incidents as "highly condemnable", deputy
leader of the BJP S S Ahluwalia said the turban signifies the
pride of Sikhs and cannot be removed and screened through
X-rays like caps.

"It should be condemned", he said, adding that this is
happening to the citizens of the country where the Prime
Minister, a Sikh, wears a turban. "The government is not taking it seriously," Ahluwalia said and referred to other such incidents including one involving India`s former Ambassador in the US Meera Shankar.

Ahluwalia said the government should take immediate steps
to ensure that Sikhs are not being humiliated anywhere in the
world on the ground of security and forced to remove their

Claiming that Italy`s famous cheese production is in the
hands of Sikhs, he said the government should ensure that the
pride of the turban must be protected and the Italian
Ambassador be summoned to convey the feelings of the Sikhs.

Complaining of such incidents in Italy, the BJP leader
said if such a thing happens again then India should mete out
the same treatment to Italian diplomats that is given to
suspected "mafia".

Akali Del leader Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa also echoed similar
sentiments and said the issue was raised several times and the
government too has given assurances many times in this regard,
but the incidents were continuing.


First Published: Wednesday, December 7, 2011 - 16:17

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