SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — A disturbing YouTube video of an elderly Sikh passenger sleeping on a Jet Blue flight from New York to California has alarmed human rights advocates.

The forty-second clip is captioned, “Would you feel safe? Flying With Bin Laden.” The man filming makes no effort to hide his face, and on occasion smiles, as though he is taking a clever selfie.

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United Sikhs, an organization that is working to quell anti-Sikh hostility is working to get the video removed from YouTube.

“No one, Sikh, Muslim, or otherwise should be afraid to travel. These types of incidents only weaken the fabric of our nation,” said staff attorney Jaspreet Kaur in a press statement.

The man sleeping in the video is Darshan Singh of California. According to United Sikhs, Singh “recalls his Jetblue flight from New York to California in November as unremarkable. He didn’t exchange words with the man sitting next to him, and was surprised when he saw the video of himself online.”

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Sikhs are not Muslim, but since the September 11 attacks, the men have been the targets of anti-Muslim sentiments and hate-crimes because of their distinctive turban (Dastar) and beard.

So far, the YouTube video of Singh has over gotten more than 63,000 views.


CBSSF.com writer, producer Jan Mabry is also executive producer and host of The Bronze Report. She lives in Northern California. Follow her on Twitter @janmabr.

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