UK Sikh girl may move court over ban on her bracelet in school

November 14th, 2007 - 2:21 pm ICT by admin  

London, Nov 14 (ANI): A fourteen-year-old Sikh girl, who was suspended from her school in South Wales for wearing a ‘Kara’– a religious bracelet– is planning to challenge the matter in the court of law.
Sarika Singh, a student of Aberdare Girls’ School, was suspended for a week after she refused to remove her Kara.
On her return to school this week after completion of the suspension, she was turned away again over the bracelet - which she says is a “constant reminder to do good,” the Daily Mail reported.
“We are very, very disappointed,” said Sarika’s mother Sinita after a 20-minute meeting with headmistress Jane Rosser.
Sarika, who is the only Sikh pupil at the school, was accompanied by her mother, and a representative from the Valleys Race Equality Council, an organisation supported financially by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission on her return.
Liberty, the human rights group, is providing legal representation to the family. Its spokesman said that the group’s solicitor Anna Fairclough wrote to the school on Monday, warning that an application for a judicial review of the decision to ban the bracelet would be lodged at the High Court if the matter was not resolved in the pupil’s favour within the next fortnight.
In February this year, a High Court had rejected a Muslim pupil’s demand to wear the niqab, which covers nearly all of the face.
However, Liberty said the bangle case is different because Sikhs are recognised in law as an ethnic as well as religious group - so the case falls under the Race Relations Act, as well as the Human Rights Act invoked in the niqab case.
After the school noticed that Sarika was wearing a Kara, she was taught in isolation for nine weeks before the suspension, the daily reported. (ANI)

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