|Signature campaign against turban curbs|
TIMES NEWS NETWORK[ FRIDAY, JANUARY 23, 2004 12:22:43 AM ]
Akal Purakh Ki Fauj, a Sikh organisation, launched its signature campaign from Amritsar . It proposes to collect about two lakh signatures in support of French Sikhs, said Fauj president Jaswinder Singh Advocate, who is also a SGPC member.
The SGPC had earlier announced to stage demonstration in front of the French Embassy at Delhi on January 22.
The demonstration was cancelled after Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and foreign minister Jaswant Singh said that they would take up the issue with the French government. Majinderpal Kaur, director, United Sikhs, in an e-mail to Times News Network on Thursday quoted news reports about a 50-year-old Sikh man being forced to remove his turban before entering a government building in Paris .
Jagmohan Singh from Bobigny, a suburb of Paris , had gone to the Creama Perfecture in La Chapelle to extend his temporary residence permit when security officers refused to return his turban.
Sikhs in France would be holding a march in Paris on January 31 to rally public support for their appeal. The tiny French Sikh community of 10,000 people were not consulted by the Stasi commission which recommended the proposed law to the government.
French President Jacques Chirac had given a call for legislation banning wearing of articles of faith, religion and ethnic identity in public schools and regulate their wearing at the workplace.
The law would ban Sikhs from wearing turbans. It would also prohibit
Muslims from wearing head scarves, Jews from wearing skullcaps and oversized
Christian crosses in public schools and workplaces.