Variety, NY Daily News, Instagram

Why Film and TV Actor Was Barred From Boarding Plane

Feb 9, 2016  •  Post A Comment

An actor known for his work on film and television said he was turned away because of his turban when he attempted to board an Aero Mexico plane. Variety reports that Waris Ahluwalia, known for his work in films including “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and “The Darjeeling Limited” and for appearances on the TV series “The Carrie Diaries,” went public about the incident in Mexico City.

Ahluwalia, a Sikh, said he was held back until the other passengers were allowed to board and then had his bag searched, Variety reports, adding: “He was also swabbed and patted down. When the actor was asked to remove his turban he refused.”

Ahluwalia told the New York Daily News that removing his turban “is not something that I would do in public. That’s akin to asking someone to take off their clothes.”

The Daily News report adds: “The checkpoint’s metal detector never went off, but Ahluwalia was asked to remove his turban in a public place regardless. He asked to be taken to a private area, but was denied.”

Ahluwalia was reportedly told he would have to find another plane. He later posted a photo of himself with his plane ticket on Instagram, noting the ticket’s “SSSS” designation, indicating Secondary Security Screening Selection. The designation flags passengers for further inspection after they make it through security.

Recounting the incident, Ahluwalia commented: “I was shaking at first. That’s not a nice thing to be told, that you are not allowed to fly on this plane because of something you are wearing, or because of your religious beliefs.”

Waris Ahluwalia-InstagramWaris Ahluwalia with his plane ticket (Instagram)


  1. Oh well. Such is life. I believe that people who wear certain garments under the guise of a religion or representation (gang affiliation) in certain situations are only asking for problems. A turban on an airplane? Really? The majority will have an issue.

  2. He knew better he wanted something to write about and complain about. Here is a thought maybe stay in your own country then we won’t insult you. It’s insulting to us that because of your nationality we have to have a cavity search to fly. Sorry about your day.

  3. And if suddenly you aren’t allowed to fly because you’re wearing a cross because it’s your guise of religion? What about an orthodox Jewish man wearing a yarmulke? Hm? Jim La Forte and Harley? Do you two not understand the truly American concept of FREEDOM OF RELIGION? It doesn’t just apply to you.

  4. It is obvious that Harley and LaForte have no idea about the Indian Sikh ethnic group and religion. Instead they attribute his turban to old-fashioned ideas (mostly from cartoons) that people from the Middle-East all wear turbans. As for Harley’s response that Waris Ahluwalia should “stay in his own country then we won’t insult you,” Waris Ahluwalia was born in India, but moved to the U.S. when he was five. The U.S. is his country. He was trying to get home to the U.S. from Mexico when this happened. These people show why many people in the U.S. are considered not only ignorant, but unwilling to even try to learn about other people, their religion and the rest of the world outside the borders of the U.S.

  5. “Stay in your own country and we won’t insult you”
    Okay, how about you and Copter stay with yer still up in the mountain and we won’t insult you by laughing at your custom dental work by crystal meth.
    Besides, turbans are cool. Hadji on JONNY QUEST kicked ass!

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