Air India pilot forced to remove turban at Spain airport, Manjinder Singh Sirsa writes to EAM

By Rajan Nath -- November 28, 2019 1:11 pm -- Updated:Feb 15, 2021

Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee President, Manjinder Singh Sirsa, on Wednesday wrote to External Affairs Minister (EAM) Subrahmanyam Jaishankar over the harassment and discrimination with the Captain Simran Gujral of Air India because of his turban. He said in a tweet: "Madrid airport is notorious for racial discrimination incidents. Last evening, Captain Simran Gujral of Air India was harassed and discriminated because of his turban. I request Dr S Jaishankar Ji to raise this issue at the global level."

In a letter, Manjinder Singh Sirsa said, "I wish to share with you the harassment faced by Air India official, Captain Simranjeet Singh Gujran at Madrid airport. He was subjected to racial discrimination because of his turban. The Madrid airport officials demanded him to remove his turban and asked for a manual check up of his turban which is an offence in the eyes of a Sikh."

Adding, he said "All this happened despite Captain Gujral clearing the metal detectors. Truly, this is a case of bias and racial attitude towards Sikhs at the Madrid airport. Such incidents have happended there in the recent past also when Sikhs were asked to remove the turban or the airport officials disrespected the turban by manhandling the Sikhs."

Meanwhile, he said "As you are well aware, the turban is the essence of a Sikh's identity and it is important to create awareness at the global level about how sensitive Sikhs are about their turban. I request your good self to raise this issue at the global level and specially with Spain government at Madrid airport who continues to hurt our sentiments and play the 'ignorance' card to their advantage."

-PTC News