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Press Release: Thursday, 05 January 2006, (23rd Poh, Samvat 537 Nanakshahi)

UNITED SIKHS Defends the Turban as a Religious Requirement for Sikhs

Paris – An Agence France Press (AFP) report in the English Press on Monday misquoted a UNITED SIKHS statement in French by saying that the Turban is not ‘religious by nature’.

“I had issued a statement in French on behalf of UNITED SIKHS announcing the commencement of proceedings for a fourth French Sikh student, Gurvinder Singh, who was expelled from school for wearing a turban this academic year,” said Kudrat Singh, director of the UNITED SIKHS chapter in France.

“In the statement I had stated that French Sikh students were being discriminated against as an ethnic group under the French Anti Discrimination Act 2004, which prohibits discrimination on ethnic grounds.”

“I did not say that the Turban is not religious by nature. I have been misquoted in the English Press whereas the original version of my statement in French was accurately reported in the French press,”he added.

UNITED SIKHS is providing legal counsel and support for litigation where four French Sikhs students are suing the French government for expelling them on grounds that their rights to practise their religion under the European Convention of Human Rights and their ethnic rights under the Anti Discrimination Act 2004 have been violated. UNITED SIKHS is also supporting Shingara Singh’s legal case for his right to wear a Turban for his driver’s licence photograph. To read previous Press Releases on this issue see http://unitedsikhs.org/rtt/

Issued by:
Kudrat Singh

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To transform underprivileged and minority communities and individuals into informed and vibrant members of society through civic, educational and personal development programs, by fostering active participation in social and economic activity.

UNITED SIKHS is also an avenue for networking between like-minded organisations to establish and nurture meaningful projects and dialogues - whether social, cultural or political- to promote harmony, understanding and reciprocity in our villages, towns and cities.

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