A tweet by AFP journalist to HDFC Bank to take action against one of his employees for expressing his views has created an outrage on Twitter.
Uzair Hasan Rizvi, a journalist at AFP news agency has implored HDFC Bank to act against one of its employees for views he calls ‘Islamophobic’ and ‘Xenophobic’. He has also tagged Mumbai Police suggesting that the person he is accusing of bigotry is in need of counseling.
— Uzair Hasan Rizvi (@RizviUzair) May 21, 2019
Akshay Lahoti who was recognised as an employee at HDFC LIfe by the company on twitter had posted his view and suggested that in light of the partition since Hindus were not given an opportunity to express their opinion on the matter of India becoming a secular country and giving citizenship to Muslims, there ought to be a Brexit-style referendum where Hindus can register their opinion. According to him, “a bunch of elitists” forced their personal idea of India upon the Hindus of the country.
While HDFC has responded to Rizvi’s tweet stating that necessary action will be taken against the individual concerned, it has also sparked outrage among people on social media as who claim that the employee was merely expressing his constitutional right of freedom of expression.
group, we strongly condemn such divisive and insensitive comments /views. -Zubin (2/2)
— HDFC Bank (@HDFCBank_Cares) May 21, 2019
People have also threatened to boycott HDFC in the case any adverse action is taken against the employee for his opinions.
He is just exercising his FOS which is guaranteed by the constitution you cannot fire him for that
His post is nonabusive, he has a right to tell his opinions out loud last time I checked this country was still a democracy act like you're in one.
Firing him would be hinduphobia!
— Not The Girl Next Door (@nt_d_grlnxtdoor) May 22, 2019
If u remove akshay lahoti or harass him. We will tag u with every hinduphobic's SM account who works across HDFC group. Looking forward that u take actions against them too. What a shame, employers getting into personal opinions on religion!! Sick
— Bhartiya (@gary_agg) May 22, 2019
Will close my SB and Broking accounts with HDFC if he is sacked..My brother will follow too..
— J©️ ⚔️ Aryavarta ⚔️ (@J481) May 22, 2019
If Akshay loses his job then i will close my account with HDFC the next day.
— Swami (@soami_s) May 22, 2019
Interestingly, the man himself Rizvi who has accused the HDFC employee with Islamophobia has had his own history of Hinduphobia. In 2017, he had shared a tweet branding the Hindu custom of ‘Ayudh Puja’ during the Vijaya Dashami celebrations in Bengal as ‘Saffron camp learning from Godse’.
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