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Amaninder Singh Sandhu

New Zealand’s First Turbaned Police Officer — Amaninder Singh Sandhu

Sikh Council of New Zealand congratulates Amaninder Singh Sandhu on becoming the first Sikh New Zealand Police Officer to don a turban on duty. It is an historically significant moment for the Sikh community of New Zealand. A lot of work has gone into making this moment possible, and for the record some of the statements circulating in the media need to be corrected. Following is the correct sequence of events:

  • Around September 2007, a turbaned Sikh, Amaninder Singh Sandhu, started undergoing the police recruitment process. As he progressed through various stages of the process, it became apparent that he would sail through the process and pose some questions around turban to NZ Police.
  • New Zealand Police and the Sikh Council of New Zealand made contact towards the end of November 2007 regarding protocols around turban and met for the first time on December 11, 2007 in Auckland. During this meeting Amaninder Singh Sandhu was also present. In this meeting NZ Police was given a sample turban (tied in its proper shape) for approval by the top brass. It was also agreed that this turban will be placed in NZ Police Museum to mark its historical significance.
  • It is important to note that by December 2007 at least six members of the Sikh community were serving with NZ Police, which also included Constable Jagmohan Malhi. Since none of them was practicing the most visible aspect of Sikh faith, viz., long unshorn hair covered with a turban that signifies walking in God’s Will, the question of establishing protocols around turban as part of NZ Police Uniform did not arise. This became necessary only when Amaninder Singh Sandhu started undergoing the recruitment process.
  • On December 21, 2007 the Sikh Council received confirmation from National Manager for Uniform and Equipment that the sample turban had been accepted by the top brass and the process of establishing protocols governing the turban could now go ahead.
  • The next step in this process was to visit the RNZ Police College and report the areas where the turban could pose some questions during training. A three member team of the Sikh Council visited RNZPC on March 24-25, 2008 experiencing first hand the life of a recruit and pointing out areas where some adjustments needed to be made. All the issues of concern, to the Sikhs and to the NZ Police, were sorted out in the spirit of accommodation and understanding that has marked this process from the very beginning and for this NZ Police must be commended wholeheartedly. Later on, the questions like supply of turban material and the modifications to the police badge were also resolved.
  • Thus it was that Amaninder Singh Sandhu entered RNZPC on June 9, 2008 as the first turbaned recruit to NZ Police.

Thus, Amaninder Singh Sandhu has the following firsts to his credit:

  1. On June 9, 2008 he became the first turbaned recruit to enter Royal New Zealand Police College
  2. In the second week of his training, he became the first turbaned recruit to take the Police Oath
  3. On September 1, 2008 he became the first turbaned New Zealand Police Officer to perform beat duty in Auckland Central, where he made arrests and issued traffic violation tickets amongst other duties of a Police Officer

Putting the above on public record has become necessary due to the erroneous information sourced from a couple of journalists’ imagination (in order to appear “original”) that the first turbaned police officer of NZ Police is Jaggi Malhi. For the erroneous information see the links below:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/nelsonmail/4690344a6510.html

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10531934

http://www.3news.co.nz/NelsonpoliceconstablefirsttowearturbaninNewZealand/tabid/423/articleID/71141/cat/64/Default.aspx

The facts about Jagmohan Singh Malhi’s claim to being the first turbaned police officer are:

  • In May 2008 Sikh Council was told by NZ Police of the wishes of Constable Jaggi Malhi to start practicing his faith again. This raised the question of guidelines to decide who may or may not don a turban as part of the police uniform. Sikh Council’s main concern was that they did not want the wrong practice of depilated heads covered with turban, taking root in NZ. “Turban is an extension of an article of faith, the unshorn hair that a Sikh is required to keep,” said Verpal Singh, Secretary of the Sikh Council of New Zealand. “If one does not have the unshorn hair there is no need to modify the existing rules governing Police headwear. Unshorn hair of a Sikh must be covered with a turban and nothing else, whereas depilated hair may be covered with the normal Police cap.”
  • These issues were sorted during a meeting at RNZPC on June 13, 2008 which was also attended by Constable Malhi. Constable Malhi was told to grow his hair and beard which he agreed to do during his six week leave, on return from which he could then replace his normal Police headwear with a turban. He was also required to give an undertaking that if he decides to cut his hair, he must inform his superiors and return to the normal police headwear.
  • Thus it was that Constable Jagmohan Malhi donned the turban for the first time on September 11, 2008 at 5.00pm and became focus of some very positive news reports.

So whichever way we look at it, the honour of being the First Turbaned Police Officer of New Zealand must go to Amaninder Singh Sandhu.

Both Amaninder Singh Sandhu and Jagmohan Singh Malhi are a cause for great pride for the Sikh community of New Zealand.

The YouTube video may be watched at this link:

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49 thoughts on “First Turbaned Police Officer of New Zealand

  1. Jo Boleeeeeeeeeeyyyyyyy SO Nihalllllllll
    SAT SHRI AKAL……………………..

  2. Boht Sohne Shera!!

    Thanks for injecting some fuel to existing police officers like Malhi who dint do it in 1st place due to lack of courage or might have done it later in life for publicity!

    But, ur intentions were well known to all of us!

    Make Sikhs and NZ pride by doing good service!

    Deg Teg Fateh!

  3. Amaninder you made entire Sikh Community proud. I just realized how many youngster will be inspired after reading and looking at pictures of yours. Thanks for doing this. Waheguru Chardi Kala Bakshe!

  4. ਬੱਲੇ ਓ ਸਰਦਾਰਾ…..ਨਹੀਂ ਰੀਸਾਂ ਤੇਰੀਆਂ…..ਰੱਬ ਕਰੇ ਤੁਸੀਂ ਆਪਣੇ ਮਕਸਦ ਵਿਚ ਕਾਮਯਾਬ ਹੋਵੋ……….ਵਾਹੇਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖਾਲਸਾ……ਵਾਹੇਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਫਤਿਹ….

  5. u really make us pride!!!!!!!
    u r a milestone in the history of entire NZ cops history!!!!!
    all the very best for future!!!!!
    chakdeeeeeee fateeeeeeeee

  6. WELL DONE. KEEP ALL UR GREAT WORK UP. YOU HAVE SET A GREAT EXAMPLE. NO MATTER WHO U ARE U CAN DO WHAT U WANT TO
    BOLLLLLLE SOHN HAL
    SAT SHIRI AKAAL
    KEEP IT UP

  7. well done… keep it up… u r the pride of whole family and sikh community… all the best.. guru maharaj daa mehar pareya haath teree tee hamesha baniya rahe

  8. congrates bro,we all r proud of u,keep it up.i told to everyone about ur achievment n we all wish u gud luck through out life n may god bless u alwayz,cheers.

  9. i taught this fellow for ielts..the day he came to me.i knew he would do something extra ordinary.n he has proved it.may waheguru bless him with all the happiness of both the worlds

  10. well done Amaninder,you’ve worked hard and derserve all credid.good luck to you for the future, i hope many others follow you in your footsteps.

  11. Hey Congratulations,

    Good work n keep it up.. U really made entire Sikh community proud. Some one said right –

    “u r a milestone in the history of entire NZ cops!!!!!”

    Gur Fateh..

  12. Hai ke nahi tor Singh Di….
    Too Good Thandedar Saab(dats what we all call him ova in NZ…lol)…keep it Up….guru mehar kare….Bole So Nehal….Sat Sri Akal….

  13. VEERJI YOU MADE ENTIRE SIKH COMMUNITY PROUD…
    REALLY U MAKE US PRIDE!!!!!!!!
    U R AN INSPIRATION FOR OUR YOUNGSTER ….
    DIS WORDS REALLY SUITS ON U DAT …
    ” SINGH IS KING N SINGH IS AMANINDER SINGH SANDHU”
    VEERJI REALLY WE R VERY PROUD OF U…
    ALL D BEST FOR UR FUTURE …

  14. Sewa desh, kom di karni ea baadi aukhi,
    galla karniya dher savalliya ne,
    jina kom sewa vich ne per paya ,
    unna lakha musibata challiya ne,
    “SINGH IS KING ,KING IS AMANINDER SINGH SANDHU”
    LOVE FROM
    SANDHU FAMILY

  15. Bhallian nita ne roohan diyan,
    Seer AKHAL PURKAH agghe chukkande ne,
    hosela buland ne jinnah daryande,
    seena cheer ke pahada chon gujar jande ne,
    Mehar ho jinna te KALGIYA wale de hathon te saro jammande ne,
    sari duniyan toh gal vakhriyan ne ,
    tahi ta chiddyan nal baj laddon de ne,
    SAVA SAVA lakh nal jhe eak laddende ne,
    tahi ta sache surme kahlande ne,
    jhe kar ke dikhaya gal jag nalon vakhri ,
    tahi ta duniya wale ajj ” BANDHAYAN” dende ne….
    congratulation veerji….
    we r proud ov u…..
    LOVE FROM
    SIDHU FAMILY

  16. Wow !!! CONGRATULATIONS Amaninder !!I’m so-so-sooo proud of u. May God bless u with loads of success n happiness 🙂 (Waise tussi mainu pul ta nai gaye ho na….?) Congratulations once again ! Lotsa gud wishes n prayers:)

  17. Hi bro….its really nice to see and read about you….being myself from the sikh religion..i feel proud for your success….may GOD bless you with success, serenity, honesty in every phase of life.
    “Jo-bole-so-nihaal…sat-sri-akal”

  18. congrates bro,we all r proud of u,keep it up.i told to everyone about ur achievment n we all wish u gud luck through out life n may god bless u alwayz,cheers

  19. I am a New Zealand Muslim and to see this makes me proud of this nice man, good on you for being so strong within your faith and well done to the New Zealand Police for respecting the personal beliefs of their Officers…I hope and pray that more public sectors will appreciate the employees rights more…may you be blessed brother : )

    Peace My Friend

    Salim Muhammad Bilal Butler

    clear_water@xtra.co.nz

  20. hi brother iam all the way from india but now in nz ..i am also looking to be as like as you ..i am waiting 4 taht day despirately

  21. jooooooooo bole sooooooo nihal
    he made all tha sikh community 2 feel proud
    of him n gave a veryyyyy important messege 2
    all da youngsters

  22. HAR MAIDAAN FATEH……………..sher punjabi hamesha chad di kala ch rehange!! JO BOLE SO NEHAAL SAT SHRI AKAAL………

  23. You have made the whole sikh community proud. Congratulations on wearing turban on duty in a different Country & always being FEARLESS.

  24. Congratulations you are an inspiration to all Sikh Community
    well done… keep it up… u r the pride of whole family and sikh community… all the best.
    From:- Gurjeet Malhi

  25. Waheguru ji ka Khalsa Waheguru ji ki Fateh
    Amaninder Singh Sandhu veer ji I am proud of u. My good wishes always with u…MAY GOD BLESS U AND GIVE U A LOT OF HAPPINESS AND SUCCESS IN UR LIFE!

  26. amaninder paji i m proud of u and i am intersted in joining th WA police (Western Australian police) and wanna be a first sikh in western australia .

  27. Congratulations to our Sikh Officers, so great to see the Turban in our Police Force. I am sure our Sikh Officers will be a great force for good

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