St. Louis: An Islamic cab driver in St. Louis is challenging the regional taxi commission's wardrobe rules in court after receiving dozens of tickets for wearing traditional religious clothing.
Raja Naeem, 50, is a native of Pakistan who immigrated to the United States two decades ago and now lives in the St. Louis suburb of Manchester.
He says his religious beliefs require him to wear a traditional head covering known as a kufi, a billowy shirt called a kurta and loose-fitting pants rather than the Metropolitan Taxicab Commission's mandated uniform of black slacks and a white, button-down shirt.
He sued the taxi commission in St. Louis Circuit Court, alleging harassment and retaliation based on his religious views - including an arrest at Lambert-St Louis International Airport.
On Monday, the two sides squared off in a case Circuit Judge Robert Dierker Jr. took under advisement without issuing a ruling.
"I want to practice my religion as well as provide for my family," Naeem, a father of four daughters, said in an interview after the hearing.