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Sikhs approach dist admn after school asks boy not to wear turban

By S. Raju/Utkarsha Tyagi
UPDATED ON NOV 28, 2019 05:41 PM IST

MEERUT A Sikh boy was allegedly asked not to wear a turban to school by the principal in Najibabad area of Bijnore.

Last week, Navjot Singh, a student of Class 10, started wearing a turban to St Mary’s School instead of the usual ‘patka’ (a piece of cloth used by Sikh men to cover their hair). But the school management asked him to continue wearing a ‘patka’, said family members.

On Monday, a number of Sikhs gathered at a gurudwara in Najibabad and staged a protest against the principal’s decision. They also submitted a memorandum to the sub-divisional magistrate of the area, demanding that the school revokes the order.

Balbeer Singh, head of gurudwara committee of Najibabad, said: “Turban is not something we wear to represent some sort of fashion. It is a part of our identity. We wear it to represent our culture and our community.”

“In a country where we are free to follow any religion, a school cannot stop students from following a religion of their choice,” he added.

He also said that the school did the same two years ago when two students wore turbans. “That time, we didn’t talk about it but this time we have raised the issue,” said Balbeer who was also a part of the team that went to the SDM to talk about the matter.

Members of the committee said, “We went to the school to talk to the principal, but she didn’t have a word with us.”

Meanwhile, SDM of Najibabad, Sangita Singh, ordered a probe into the issue. On Thursday, she said: “It seems the issue was raised due to some sort of miscommunication between the school management and parents of the student. We would make sure that no religious sentiments are hurt.” She also said that efforts are on to work out a solution.

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