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Sikh News Pentagon: Sikh in military keeping hair (UPI)

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by Sikh News Reporter, Oct 30, 2009.

  1. Sikh News Reporter

    Sikh News Reporter United States
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    SPNer Contributor Supporter

    Sep 20, 2004
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    The Pentagon said the U.S. Army is allowing a Sikh to keep his uncut hair and beard while serving in the military.

    The Pentagon public affairs office confirmed Capt. Kamaljit Singh Kalsi's request to keep his hair, beard and turban in honor of his Sikh beliefs was approved by Army officials, CNN reported Thursday.

    Adherents to the Sikh faith are not allowed to cut their hair or shave. As per those beliefs, Kalsi filed a request with the Army this spring.

    "Like the many Sikhs who fought before me, I know I will serve America with honor and excellence," Kalsi, a doctor, said in a statement.

    Army Maj. Gen. Gina Farrisee clarified the decision was based on an individual case and did not represent an official change in Army policy.

    "This accommodation is based solely on the facts and circumstances of your case," Farrisse said in a letter to Kalsi. "This accommodation does not constitute a blanket accommodation for any other individual."

    CNN said the decision was applauded by the Sikh Coalition, which called the move "a major step toward ending a 23-year-old policy that excludes Sikhs from service."
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