Sikh Designer, Actor Says He Wasn't Allowed to Board Flight Because of His Turban | NBC 10 Philadelphia
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Sikh Designer, Actor Says He Wasn't Allowed to Board Flight Because of His Turban

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    Actor Waris Ahluwalia poses during a portrait session on day seven of the 12th annual Dubai International Film Festival held at the Madinat Jumeriah Complex on December 15, 2015 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

    Sikh-American designer and actor Waris Ahluwalia said that his turban prevented him from boarding a plane in Mexico City.

    The flight's final destination was New York City, where Ahluwalia is based, but attendants at the airport barred him from boarding his Aeroméxico flight, NBC News reported. Ahluwalia recalled the event on social media. 

    "This morning in Mexico City I was told I could not board my @aeromexico flight to NYC because of my turban. #FearisanOpportunitytoEducate #humanrights #dignity #lovenotfear," Ahluwalia wrote in the caption of his photo.

    In a statement released Monday by the Sikh American Legal Defense & Education Fund (SALDEF), the organization criticized the airline's actions, writing, "We are disappointed and concerned that Mr. Ahluwahlia was asked to remove his turban prior to boarding his flight. The turban is an integral part of a Sikh's identity and removal in public is akin to a strip search. The security personnel involved in this debacle owe Mr. Ahluwahlia an apology and must be trained in cultural and religious awareness."