Sikh Student Says O.C. Bar Kept Him Out Due to Turban

February 8, 2007

Source: ABC News/KABC Los Angeles

A national Sikh-American advocacy group has asked a bar for an apology and a policy change after its owner allegedly refused to let a man enter because his turban violated a dress code prohibiting hats.

"This is blatantly discriminatory," Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund director Rajbir Singh Datta said this week. "You're trying to have fun with your friends, and you're forced to stay outside because of your religion."

Sanjum Paul Singh Samagh, a 24-year-old University of California, Irvine, medical student, said the Pierce Street Annex bar turned him away on Jan. 25 when he refused to remove his black cotton turban, or dastaar.

Samagh said he tried to explain to owner Doug Adsit that he wears the headpiece for religious reasons, but that Adsit refused to make an exception.