Punjabi singer Karan Aujla is in the headlines again, this time for supporting Turban wearing Sikhs in Montreal. It was in June 2019 when Quebec hit the headlines for Bill 21. What is Bill 21? Quebec, become the first state or province in North America to ban Muslim headscarves and other religious symbols, including Jewish kippahs, Sikh turbans, and Christian crosses, among some public servants. That is Bill 21.
Bill 21, or its official name, “An Act Respecting the Laicity of the State,” was passed in June after Quebec’s center-right government held a marathon parliamentary session—and curbed debate in the face of staunch opposition. Yet polls nevertheless show the legislation is popular—63 percent of Quebecers support a ban on judges, police officers, and prison guards wearing religious symbols; 59 percent back such a restriction on teachers, too. The legislation, which applies only to new hires or those who change jobs within an organization, means workers in positions of authority in public schools, courtrooms, law enforcement agencies and other places can no longer wear such symbols.
At a recent live show, Karan Aujla pointed out his support for those male and female Sikhs who live in Montreal. Wearing a turban or any religious symbols in the workplace is frowned upon by many in the state. So wearing them is not easy for anyone. Check out the video of Karan Aujla saying what he said during a gig last night in the state.
Check out a recent interview with Amrit Kaur where she highlights how Bill 21 forced her to move away from the state:
A recently-graduated teacher has moved to Surrey because of the ban on religious symbols in Quebec. Amrit Kaur, who is Sikh, lived in Quebec from the age of five. It’s where she grew up, and when she graduated from the University of Ottawa, she hoped to work in Montreal.