Senior Asian British police officer sues over racial discrimination, humiliation

August 23rd, 2008 - 12:58 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Aug 23 (ANI): One of Britains most senior police officers has formally lodged a highly damaging race claim against Scotland Yard on the grounds that he has allegedly been “harassed, degraded and humiliated” because he is Asian and a Muslim.

Scotland Yard Assistant Commissioner Tarique Ghaffur has started the process to take his boss, Commissioner Sir Ian Blair, to an industrial tribunal claiming that he is the victim of race discrimination.

The action was leaked in June and legal papers claimed that Ghaffur has been further victimized by threats that he would be sacked unless he suspended the employment tribunal proceedings.

It is the first time an officer of such seniority has sued the Metropolitan Police, which now has 28 days to formally respond.

A dossier compiled by Ghaffur in the past three years alleges that the level of racial discrimination in Scotland Yard has worsened and that senior ethnic minority officers face a hostile atmosphere, The Telegraph reported.

It claims that the combined effect has been to create a degrading and humiliating environment for him.

Sir Ian, who has often been accused of being too politically correct, is furious at the revolt from his No.3 and firmly denies racism.

One insider at Scotland Yard said: The atmosphere is febrile; it really is a shocking, embarrassing state of affairs. This could be the beginning of the end, for both Sir Ian and Tarique.

It is understood that there are three main issues, which have prompted Ghaffur to take action.

They include allegedly being sidelined over key decisions relating to the 2012 Olympic Games in London, for which Ghaffur is head of security.

He alleges that civil servants at the Home Office conspired with Sir Ian and his deputy Paul Stephenson to strip him of his responsibilities.

The documents also claim that Londons bid to host the Olympics contained promises that a black or Asian officer would head its security and that officials had reneged on this pledge.

Ghaffur is also said to be upset by a failure to renew his contract beyond March 2009, which he claims is discriminating against his age, because he is over 50 years old.

The final allegation is that his 180,000 pound-a-year role as head of Central Operations at Scotland Yard has been compromised and he was silenced over 42-day detention debate. (ANI)

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