Sikh Soldier Wears Turban Instead of Bearskin on Queen’s B’day
Guardsman Charanpreet Singh Lall marched among 1,000 British soldiers taking part in the Trooping the Colour parade.
A 22-year-old Sikh soldier on Saturday, 9 June, scripted history by becoming the first to wear a turban instead of a bearskin hat during an annual parade that marks the birthday of Britain's longest-reigning monarch Queen Elizabeth II.
Guardsman Charanpreet Singh Lall marched among 1,000 British soldiers who took part in the Trooping the Colour parade.
His turban was black, matching his comrades' headgear and featured the Coldstream Guards' ceremonial cap star.
"For myself, being the first turban-wearing Sikh to troop the colour and to be part of the escort it is a really high honour for myself, and hopefully for everyone else as well," said Lall from Leicester, who came to the UK from India as a boy.
"I'm quite proud and I know that a lot of other people are proud of me as well," he was quouted as saying by the BBC.
Lall said he expected it would encourage those from different religions and backgrounds to join the Army.
I hope that people watching, that they will just acknowledge it and that they will look at it as a new change in historyGuardsman Charanpreet Singh Lall
"I hope that more people like me, not just Sikhs but from other religions and different backgrounds, that they will be encouraged to join the Army," said Lall who was born in Punjab and joined the British army in January 2016.
Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle also joined other senior royals at the event.
It was the first time Meghan had attended the ceremony following her marriage to Prince Harry on 19 May. While 92-year-old Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her actual birthday on 21 April, the Trooping of the Colour ceremony takes place on any Saturday of June.
The ceremony has commemorated the birthday of the sovereign for more than 250 years and also functions as a display of army drills, music and horsemanship.
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