German court to rule on Sikh motorcyclist’s helmet exemption – DPA

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A German court is to rule today (4 July) whether a Sikh motorcyclist should be allowed to ride wearing the turban prescribed by his religion rather than a standard helmet, reports DPA.

The southern city of Konstanz refused special permission to the Sikh man, who later took his case to the highest court for administrative cases. The court, which sits in the eastern city of Leipzig, is expected to publish its decision around noon, according to the report.

The lower court found that freedom of worship, which is guaranteed under the German constitution, was in conflict with the rights of third parties to psychological and physical integrity. Drivers wearing a helmet would in addition be in a better position to provide first aid or to call the emergency services after an accident, it ruled.

The report noted that the “dastaar” is an important part of Sikh culture and is mandatory for all Sikhs, who wear it to cover their uncut hair. It represents honour, self-respect and piety.

The report added that several provinces in Canada have provided exemptions to Sikhs wishing to wear turbans rather than helmets on the road.

 

RELATED STORY:

Another US police department allows Sikhs to don turban, keep beard (Asia Samachar, 3 July 2019)

The turban-wearing British bus driver who changed the law (Asia Samachar, 30 April 2019)

 

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