Sikhs can’t carry ‘kirpan’ in Denmark, says court

A Danish court has upheld a ruling that Sikhs in the country can’t carry a ‘kirpan’, one of the five religious symbols a Sikh gets at baptism.

A Copenhagen city court had last year convicted Indian national Ripudaman Singh of violating the Danish arms law that prohibits carrying knives longer than seven cm in public places.

The court on Tuesday said although Singh wore the blunt knife as a “religious symbol”, it was still a violation of a ban on bearing weapons, including knives, except for carrying out a trade, hunting, fishing or other recreational activities.

The court, however, ruled that Singh did not have to pay the 3,000 Denmark kroners fine that the lower court ordered him to pay last year, according to Sikh Sangat news.

In 2004, Singh, then a student, visited the US embassy in Copenhagen and presented the ‘kirpan’ for a normal security check. However, police was called and the case went to court.

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Indo-Asian News Service, via the Hindustan Times, India
Oct. 25, 2006

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This post was last updated: Wednesday, October 25, 2006 at 5:11 PM, Central European Time (CET)