After a diamond export firm in Mumbai rejected Zeshan Ali Khan because he is a Muslim, the MBA graduate's friends are no longer seeking placement with Hare Krishna Exports Pvt Ltd.
Mukund Mani Pandey told TOI that he was made an offer after two rounds of the selection process, and another classmate was set to enter the second round of interviews. "However, after seeing the manner in which Zeeshan was treated, we decided we didn't want to join the firm," he said.
The Hindu reported that Omkar Bansode was no longer interested in working at the firm. “The company lacks broad-mindedness. Whatever happened to Zeshan is wrong and totally unacceptable. Even if they give me a job now, I will reject it outright,” he said.
Pandey said they did not get a good vibe from the firm after visiting on Wednesday to find out why their friend was rejected. “When we visited the office we got strong vibes from the place that it favoured only Hindus as employees. We cannot work in such an atmosphere,” he said.
The two graduates were reportedly put off by the firm's strict rules about vegetarianism and stringent working hours.
Earlier this week, Khan told the media that he received a letter from the company stating that it does not hire Muslims: "Thanks for your application. We regret to inform you that we hire only non-Muslim candidates."
"I had applied along with two other friends, their applications were accepted but mine wasn't," he said. "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."
Following widespread outrage over the rejection, the diamond firm blamed the "blunder" on a trainee in the HR department.
"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," it said in an email.