US Army Accepts a Second Sikh With Turban And Beard Intact

December 12, 2009

Author: Staff Writer

Source: The Siasat Daily

The US Army has agreed to accept a second Sikh, Captain Tejdeep Singh Rattan, with his Sikh identity intact after an eight month long campaign by a Sikh advocacy group.

Rattan, a military dentist, had refused to remove his 'dastaar' (turban) or shave his hair as a condition of joining the military, the Sikh Coalition announced Friday.

The group had launched a campaign calling on the Army to accept all Sikhs after two sikhs, Captain Kamaljeet Singh Kalsi and Rattan were refused entry into the military unless they removed their turbans and shaved their beards.

The Army agreed to accept Kalsi in October. The US Army's acceptance of Kalsi and Rattan marks the first time in 23 years that the Army will accept Sikh recruits who maintain their articles of faith, the group noted.