Gucci is facing heavy criticism after the luxury fashion label sent white models down the runway wearing traditional Sikh turbans.
People felt that Gucci was culturally appropriating the staple, which goes beyond fashion for most Sikhs. Known as a dastaar, it is the most commonly recognised symbol of the Sikh community
People took to Twitter in their droves to share their disgust over the use of turbans, which are mandatory for all Sikh men and women.
The turban is not just an accessory to monetize; it's a religious article of faith that millions of Sikhs view as sacred. Many find this cultural appropriation inappropriate, since those wearing the turban just for fashion will not appreciate its deep religious significance. pic.twitter.com/fldmxa3Wvr— Sikh Coalition (@sikh_coalition) May 14, 2019
Many of the world's 27 million Sikhs - both men and women - wear the turban.
The New York-based Sikh Coalition civil rights group tweeted on Friday: "The Sikh turban is a sacred article of faith, @gucci, not a mere fashion accessory. #appropriation. We are available for further education and consultation if you are looking for observant Sikh models."
Earlier last year, San Jose, Calif-based Punjabi YouTuber, who posts videos under the stage name Gurpy Colors O, blasted the brand for using the Sikh religious symbol, calling the act “unacceptable and offensive.”
“Wearing another religions article of faith is not fashion, its appropriation! Sikh men are profiled and discriminated against every day for wearing a turban, yet when you put in on a white person, it’s suddenly fashionable and cool?! he wrote.
Indo-Canadian model/actor Avan Jogia felt let down by the brand. “…This isn’t a good look for you... could you not find a brown model?”
Fashion brands are frequently scrutinised for cultural appropriation.
Earlier in February, high-street retailer Zara was mocked online for selling a checkered skirt that had a striking resemblance to a lungi, a loose garment worn by men in South Asia.