Sikh actor wants to educate public on turban

Actor and designer Waris Ahluwalia was initially denied access to board an AeroMexico plane headed to New York City.

- Actor and designer Waris Ahluwalia, who has starred in The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Darjeeling Limited and The Life Aquatic, is back in the United States after he was initially denied access to board an AeroMexico plane headed to New York City.

Ahluwalia, who is Sikh and wears a turban, refused to remove the religious head piece during a security check at the airport in Mexico City last week. 

"It is part of the Sikh religion. It is not the same thing as apparel, but imagine asking someone to take off their clothes in public. It is symbolic," said Ahluwalia. 

Screeners would not let him pass and Ahluwalia took to social media site Instagram to share his displeasure and to contact the Sikh Coalition.

Two days later, AeroMexico apologized and offered to fly the Brooklyn native back to New York.

He had refused until the airline apologized and promised to train security personnel on how to screen passengers with religious items.

"It wasn't just me as a Sikh. It was me as an American. I am getting on that plane, too. Just everybody, but follow the protocol, follow the rules," said Ahluwalia.

The turban can be patted down and a wand run over it during airport screenings.

"Thank you @aeromexico for understanding the importance of religious and cultural tolerance. I am happy we were able to work together to come up with a resolution," he posted on Instagram on Wednesday with a photo of himself posing with the flight crew.

The photo shows one aviator making a thumb's up gesture.

On Tuesday, he posted he following message to his jewelry design company's Instagram account, @House_of_Waris:

"Good morning from Mexico City. On this day, and each day hereafter we must remember that our struggle against fear and ignorance is fought with love. That is the only way forward for humanity. #fearisanopportunitytoeducate #lovenotfear

 

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