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Nose stud: sacked worker wins back job

The sacked Hindu worker, Amrit Lalji, wins an appeal against the company's decision and has been asked to resume her work.

india Updated: Oct 05, 2007 16:32 IST

A Hindu worker, who was sacked from her job at Heathrow airport for wearing a tiny nose stud, has been reinstated.

Amrit Lalji, an employee of Eurest which supplies food and services to British Airway's VIP lounge at Heathrow, was asked to resume her work after she won an appeal against the company's decision on Thursday, the Daily Mail reported on Friiday.

"I had great support from the media, the union and my temple. It took me three months to get my job back but I feel I shouldn't have been put in that position in the first place.

"They agreed that I could start work again and wear my nose pin because I do not work in a catering area. I am happy to get my job back," the 43-year-old mother of three from Stanmore in North-West London was quoted as saying.

During her appeal, Lalji said that she has been wearing the stud for 25 years since her marriage and Hindu women usually have their nose pierced and fitted with a stud as part of the Shringar ritual when they marry.

Even the company admitted it had "misunderstood" the service rules and her dismissal was "unjustified". "We have found that the rules relating to facial piercings are mandatory only in catering. Though this is not clear in the handbook, given to all employees, it is specific in the text of the company's human resources directory.

"Since Lalji is not engaged in catering, her dismissal resulted from a misunderstanding of the rules and is therefore unjustified," a spokesperson for Eurest said.

It may be mentioned that another Heathrow worker Nadia Eweida was suspended last year by British Airways for wearing a Christian cross on a necklace. But, within four months, the company had backed down after pressure from various religious groups in the country.

First Published: Oct 05, 2007 13:50 IST