Sikhs protest at 'disrespect' of turban searches at airports


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Indy Politics

Thousands of Sikhs filled Parliament Square in London yesterday for a protest against the "intimidation and disrespect" of their faith at European airports. Many Sikhs are asked to remove their turbans at airports, or have them searched in what they consider to be disrespectful ways.

The turban, known as a Dastar, is regarded as an important part of the Sikh identity.

Parliament Square was filled with a sea of different-coloured head-dresses as thousands of people came from across the country for the rally. The protest, organised by the Sikh Channel, a cable TV station based in Birmingham and London, was held simultaneously with others in Brussels, Rome and Madrid.

Amar Deep Singh, from the Sikh Channel, travelled from Derby for the protest. He said: "We are used to the Government being tolerant, Britain has been very tolerant. But after 9/11 we are being mistaken as other communities who wear turbans. We're being told to take them off, almost as if it's as easy as a mobile phone. But we are not supposed to, it's a religious symbol."