Noted Karnataka astrologer Daivanja KN Somayaji was humiliated in the name of frisking at the London airport while boarding a flight to India. He was detained and frisked for over an hour. During the process, he was asked to remove the vermilion on his forehead and even the dhoti he was wearing. Embarrassed, Dr Somayaji pleaded them that it was his normal way of dressing. But the officials wiped his vermilion and vibhuti (sacred ash) that he was wearing on his forehead.

Wearing vermilion is not just a religious identity for Hindus but it has more cultural and social importance attached to it. The officials also asked him to remove his dhoti in front of the people there. His pleas to give him an alternative cloth to cover him, fell on deaf ears.

At a time when there is advanced equipment to scan the whole body it is strange that the airport authorities insisted him on removing the vermillion and his dhoti. "Wearing vermilion and dhoti are the identities of my religion. Disrespecting them is equal to disrespecting my religion. Besides, they did not respect my rights as an individual too," said the astrologer.

If not for the staff of flight in which he was travelling, this would have turned worse, he told mediapersons in Bengaluru. While there are number of incidents where people from minority community were detained and frisked, this incident of Somayaji who is a Hindu shows the airport authorities' religious tolerance.