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Beard, So Can't Box, Pushpinder Won't


Apr 3, 2005
On the front page on Hindustan Times of the day there is an article captioned as per the subject.

Ruled out. Patiala pugilist , a devout Sikh , not ready to shorn hair.

Going by the IABA rules, representing India will always remain a dream for Junior National Champion Pushpinder Singh.

A boxer in an international meet, as per the rules, has to be clean shaven on grounds that contact with an opponents facial hair could lead to an injury.

But, the Patiala pugilist , a devout Sikh, says he is not ready to cut his beard at any cost and is ready to let the opportunity slip out of his hand.

Pushpinder recently won gold in the 91+ weight category in the Junior National Championship held at Nagpur and is among the probables for the Youth Commonwealth Games to be held in India later this year.

"In India we have never had any problem in competing even while sporting beard but according to IABA rules , no one with a beard is allowed to take part in any international boxing competition. I want IABA to amend its rules for Sikhs'" says Pushpinder.

He says the Nagpur meet organizers did tell him about the IABA rules but allowed him to participate in the Nationals nevertheless.

Coach Harpreet Singh says the National Boxing Association always allows Sikh boxers to compete while sporting beards. "But we want that the IABA should also allow us , otherwise representing the Country will remain a dream for many Sikh boxers."

SAD Leader Harmail Singh Tohra, who is related to the Boxer , had demanded an amendment to this rule. He says this issue would be brought to the notice of the PM and Sports Minister.


Sep 17, 2010
That is not cool, the rules really need to be changed, so he can compete. I'm glad that he choses his religion over anything else.