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First Observant Female Sikh To Graduate From US Military Academy
2020 US Military Academy at West Point will be remarked by US President Donald Trump.
Anmol Narang will complete her Basic Officer Leadership Course at Fort Sill in Lawton, Oklahoma.
New Delhi: Second Lieutenant Anmol Narang will be the first observant Sikh to graduate from the prestigious United States Military Academy at West Point on Saturday. She has marked the history by her achievement in both the Indian and American military field.
US President Donald Trump will be delivering remarks for the 2020 US Military Academy at West Point graduation ceremony. She expressed how utterly excited she is on this greatest and historic achievement. "I am excited and honored to be fulfilling my dream of graduating from West Point on Saturday," 2LT Narang shared on the evening of this special occasion.
"The confidence and support of my community back home in Georgia has been deeply meaningful to me, and I am humbled that in reaching this goal, I am showing other Sikh Americans that any career path is possible for anyone willing to rise to the challenge," she said.
She will be completing her Basic Officer Leadership Course at Fort Sill in Lawton, Oklahoma. After completing it, she will head towards her first posting in Okinawa, Japan, in January of 2021.
Anmol Narang is a second-generation immigrant, who was born and raised in Roswell, Georgia. Since the very beginning, she has this special respect and urges to become military personnel since her maternal grandfather was in the Indian Army.
She soon developed a keen interest in the military in high school and soon starting applying for West Point after her family visited Pearl Harbor National Memorial in Honolulu, Hawaii. Narang was an undergraduate for a year at the Georgia Institute of Technology before transferring to West Point, where she further continued her studies in nuclear engineering and proceeded to pursue her career in the air defense system.
In 1987, the US Congress passed a law that prohibited Sikhs and several other religious communities from maintaining their Sikhism while being in the military. To this is a response, the Sikhs led a campaign for more than ten years to ensure that all the Sikhs may get equal opportunities in the US Armed Forces. While 2LT Narang required no accommodation for her articles of faith, her exemplary service to date underscores how diversity and pluralism remain core strengths of the US military and the country as a whole," Sikh Coalition said.
"I am immensely proud of 2LT Narang for seeing her goal through and, in doing so, breaking a barrier for any Sikh-American who wishes to serve," said US Army Captain (CPT) Simratpal Singh, a family friend of 2LT Narang.
"The broader acceptance of Sikh service members among all of the service branches, as well as in top tier leadership spaces like West Point, will continue to benefit not just the rights of religious minority individuals, but the strength and diversity of the US military," he said.
Simratpal Singh's 2016 suit over his own right to maintain his articles of faith in uniform brought a critical change in the Army's accommodations policy in 2017, which convinced the accommodations process for Sikh soldiers and ensured that accommodations would stay with them throughout their career.
In 2020, after granting several accommodations to Sikh airmen throughout the year prior, the U.S. Air Force finally agreed to look upon a similarly updated policy.