London: Dr Indarjit Singh, the director of a
charity linking several Sikh organisations in the UK, has
become the "first turbaned Sikh" member of the British
"I am delighted to be the first turbaned Sikh in
Parliament. It is an honour for the whole Sikh community,"
said Singh, the director of the Network of Sikh Organisations
Recommended by the House of Lords Appointments
Commission, the 79-year-old Singh will enter the House and sit
as an independent.
"It gives me a new opportunity to do what I have always
tried to do, to work with people of all beliefs to increase
tolerance and understanding and work for greater social and
political justice in society," said Singh, who was appointed
OBE in 1996 and CBE in 2009.
Sikhs already in Parliament include the Conservative MP
Paul Uppal, who does not wear a turban.
Singh, who is the first Sikh to have addressed a
conference at the Vatican, said "the mantra of today`s times -
to look after ourselves because we are important - is creating
a selfish and fragmented society in which rights are put
"We saw the worst features of this in the recent
riots," he said, adding "I would like, in my small way, to
work with like-minded people in all communities to reserve