Sports minister asks IOC to intervene in basketball players' turban row

New Delhi: Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal yesterday asked the the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to take up the issue of Indian basketball players being barred from wearing their patkas, a head covering in place of a turban, at the 5th FIBA Asia Cup held in China.

Two Sikh players, Amritpal Singh and Amjyot Singh, were made to remove their patkas before India’s opening tie vs Japan (July 12), with officials citing one of FIBA’s rules that states: “Headgear, hair accessories & jewellery are not permitted.”

Sonowal said: “We are shocked and outraged. We have sought a report from the Basketball Federation of India. We’ve also asked IOC to issue the guidelines/instructions to international federations so that such incidents do not take place again.”

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