Days after Mumbai-based MBA graduate Zeshan Ali Khan was allegedly denied a job for being Muslim, Kolkata –based man has lost his job for allegedly sporting a beard.
Md. Ali Ismail, a resident of Picnic Garden had been working with Adhunik Group of Industries for the past six years. Ismail, working in the capacity of General Manager – Mines, with the group had gone for Haj in May, 2014 and returned sporting a beard.
Since then, his salary was slashed to half and was paid the other half in kind. The stand-off between Ismail and the company continued till March, until he sought an appointment with the Managing Director of the Company Manoj Agarwal.
During this meeting, Ismail allegedly demanded his pending dues but was thrown out by security guards and was termed as a ‘terrorist’ by Agarwal for sporting a beard.
“As soon as I returned from my Haj pilgrimage, I had been sporting a beard. The MD of the company said that I was trying to threaten him and termed me a ‘terrorist’. It was extremely saddening to hear that I was termed as a ‘terrorist’ on my own soil,” claimed Ismail.
Later, Ismail approached the Minority Commission, Human Rights Commission and the Chief Minister’s office, but to no avail. He had filed an FIR against the MD of the company with the Ballygunge police station, but Ismail alleged that no action was taken against them. Ismail is likely to move Calcutta High Court demanding justice and a public apology for hurting his religious sentiments.
However, the company has taken dismissed such allegations, saying that he is a fraud. “Whatever Ismail has said is a lie. He had threatened us that he would ransack and vandalise our office. He is a fraud,” said Mahesh Agarwal, brother of MD, Manoj Agarwal.
As soon as the news broke, Ismail received an SMS from the company, offering him to settle his dues. But, Ismail has made it clear that he does not want the dues to be returned to him, but justice must be served to him.
Meanwhile, the Left MLAs in the West Bengal Legislative Assembly demanded action against Officer-in-Charge of the Ballygunge Police for not taking any action against the company and the authorities.