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China 'patka' row: Akal Takht seeks government intervention

Posted on Jul 24 2014 | IANS

Amritsar, July 24 : The Akal Takht, the highest temporal seat of Sikh religion, Thursday sought the intervention of the central government in the controversy over two Sikh players being forced to remove their 'patkas' (head kerchief) during an international basketball match in China recently.

Akal Takht Jathedar (chief) Gurbachan Singh termed the incident in China a shameful one and called on the central government should take appropriate steps on this issue and ensure that this did not happen again with Sikh players.

Two Sikh players -- Amritpal Singh and Amjyot Singh -- were asked to remove their patkas before the start of India's opening match against Japan July 12 at the recently concluded Asia Cup at Wuhan, China.

The officials cited Article 4.4.2 of International Basketball Federation (FIBA's) rules that states: "Players shall not wear equipment (objects) that may cause injury to other players. Headgear, hair accessories and jewellery are not permitted."

Union Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had also asked the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to take up the issue.

India finished seventh in the tournament.

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