A LEADING Mumbai- based diamond firm has been booked for causing secular disharmony after it rejected the application of a candidate on religious grounds.
Hari Krishna Exports Private Limited allegedly rejected the candidature of 22- yearold Zeshan Ali Khan from Mumbai because of his name. Zeshan said, “I had applied on May 19 at 5.45 pm and within 15 minutes I got a response from the HR department saying that they hire only non- Muslims.”Zeshan said while his application was rejected, those of his two classmates, who had also applied for jobs at the same firm and arent Muslims, were accepted.
“I could not believe my eyes that in the 21st century when PM Narendra Modi talks about inclusive growth, that a firm with a global presence could reject me because of my surname. My sister suggested that I take a screen shot of the email and post it on Facebook,”said Zeshan, who had just given his MBA final year exam. His post on the social networking site went viral, prompting the firm to respond.
Later in an e- mail apology to Zeshan, Mahendra Deshmukh, Associate VP & Head- HR of Hari Krishna Exports, said, “We would like to clarify that the company does not discriminate against candidates based on gender, caste, religion, etc. Any hurt caused in the matter is deeply regretted. This erroneous e- mail was sent by my colleague Dipika Tike who has joined recently and is still on training.”Zeshan said that an apology cant satisfactorily explain why such a reply had been sent in the first place. “They rejected me because of my name. And now they say it was an error. A typing or grammatical mistake could be considered erroneous.
How could an entire sentence be erroneous? I think the HR person was merely following the company policy,”he added.
Later, encouraged by people, including lawyers and activists, on social media, Zeshan approached the Kurla police station and lodged a FIR against the firm.
The charges against the company were made under Section 153 B ( 1) ( b) and ( c) ( denying or depriving any person of their right as citizens of India over religious, racial, language or regional lines and causing religious disharmony).
MAIL T ODAY contacted Hari Krishna Exports Mumbai head office and was told by a receptionist that an email would be sent in this regard.
The reply is still awaited.
Meanwhile, the National Commission for Minorities( NCM) has delegated the case to its member T. N. Shanoo, who would seek information from the state government on the unconstitutional hiring practices of Hari Krishna Exports.