The visit of French President Nicolas Sarkozy to India is not going to a smooth affair as the Sikh community is all set to raise the issue of banning turbans in French schools.
Almost three years after conspicuous religious symbols were banned in schools in France, the ban on turbans is being raised once again in Punjab.
The Shiromani Gurudwara Parbhandhak Committee (SGPC) has written a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asking him to raise the matter with Sarkozy when he arrives in New Delhi later this month.
"We are hopeful they'll give us the time to discuss it," SGPC Secretary Harbeant Singh says.
Sikhs are agitated over the issue and want it to be resolved soon.
"A Sikh is recognized by his turban only," Sukhwinder Singh says.
Sikh groups believe Manmohan Singh is sensitive to their concerns and would surely take up the matter with Sarkozy, who'll be chief guest at the Republic Day parade this year. They are trying for a meeting with the French President himself.
"We are pressing the French Government to restore the fundamental rights of Sikhs living in France," Kanwar Pal Singh, General Secretary of Dal Khalsa, says.
Whether or not they succeed in meeting the French President, Sarkozy surely will take back memories of lots of turbans from India. [Link]
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