MUMBAI — When Zeshan Ali Khan graduated last week, he and a couple of his friends decided to apply for a job at Mumbai's Hare Krishna Exports Pvt Ltd, a leading diamond export firm.
But to his utter disbelief Khan claimed he received a letter from the company stating that it does not hire Muslims. The exact reply read: "Thanks for your application. We regret to inform you that we hire only non-Muslim candidates."
"I completed my MBA a week ago and then applied for a job at Harikrishna Exports Private limited. I had applied along with two other friends, their applications were accepted but mine wasn't," Khan told ANI.
"I took a screenshot of the email and posted it on social media. It has gone viral. The minorities commission has sent a notice to the company. I'd only like to say, please don't discriminate candidates on the basis of religion," Khan said.
PTI reported that the National Commission for Minorities has said it will conduct an inquiry if there is any truth in the matter.
"At a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is visiting foreign countries and inviting them for investment and pushing ahead the 'Make in India' campaign, the leading export houses are rejecting candidates for their religion," Khan said.
After his post on Facebook went viral, the company reportedly sent him another mail "regretting" the incident and placing the blame squarely on a trainee in the HR team, the PTI report said.
"It was a blunder and personal mess created by one of our trainees who has no decision making power. We have 61 employees in our office here including one Muslim in the HR team," Hari Krishna Exports Private Ltd said in the mail.
As the controversy snowballed, the Associate VP & Head of HR of the company, Mahendra Deshmukh, wrote to Khan saying: “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.”
"We just received a petition this morning and as per our set procedure we will call for the comments of the respondent company and based on their response we will decide their course of action. If there is any truth in this, it is unfortunate. An inquiry should be conducted," NCM chairperson Naseem Ahmed said.
Reacting to the controversy, Minister of state for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said, "A person's caste, area or religion cannot be a demerit.
"Discrimination on the basis of religion is neither allowed by our Constitution, nor by our administration. If there has been case in which he (Zeshan) was denied or fired from the job only on the basis of his religion, then I feel its not right," he said.
(With Inputs from PTI and ANI)