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Sikh student in US removed from soccer game for wearing turban

Press Trust of India  |  Washington 

A in the state of was allegedly removed from a high school-level game by a referee for wearing a turban, according to media reports.

Officials from the Marple-Newtown School District said the incident occurred on Tuesday when the high school student was playing against the Conestoga High team, according to WPVI-TV.


Witnesses said the referee would not allow the player onto the field because he was wearing the turban in compliance with his Sikh faith.

The referee reportedly cited National Federation of High School rules that state: "Illegal equipment shall not be worn by any player. Types of equipment which are illegal include, but are not limited to helmets, hats, caps or visors."

According to the Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA), districts can apply for exemptions from such rules by requesting certain players be allowed to wear religious items, said WPVI-TV, an affiliate of the ABC

Marple Newtown School District officials were informed about the incident and have opened a probe to find out if the player's religious rights were violated by the decision, it said.

In a statement, school district attorney Mark Sereni wrote, "Our district was surprised to learn yesterday that, according to a referee's decision, the apparently does not have a rule that reasonably accommodates the wearing of religious headwear by our student athletes who play "

"Our district is investigating this ruling and has advocated and will continue to advocate for the rights of our student athletes to appropriately wear religious headgear," Sereni said.

The district officials added that there is no reason to believe the motive was to restrict the student's religious freedom, the report said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, September 29 2017. 16:42 IST
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