“I had the ability to get that job, but could not for the beard and cap”
Original article published in BBC Bangla:
By - Amitabh Bhattasali | BBC, Kolkata | February 2nd ,2019
Translated by - AMP USA members
"I went to give a job interview, where I was told that the cap should not be worn, the beard should be cut. I had the ability to get that job, but could not for the beard and cap," Manzar Hossain was speaking about his experience.
Mohammed Hasan Mallik's experience is a little different. He said, "I did not see discrimination in the corporate sector due to religious reasons, at least I did not face anything like that. They gave jobs on the basis of merit, but I have seen such discrimination in the government."
These were the thoughts shared by some people in the employment fair (Job Fair) organized by the Minorities Development & Finance Corporation of West Bengal Government and a voluntary organization Association of Muslim Professionals.
But the information says that more than 14 percent of the total population of India is Muslim, but their number is almost insignificant in getting jobs. Muslims work only a little over one percent of government jobs and in the private sector the statistics are not available. The Muslims are far behind in getting job in India are clearly mentioned in the report of Justice Sachar which was formulated to find the socio-economic conditions of Muslims.
Abdul Razzak Sheikh, Vice President of a reputable mutual fund organization and the core team member of Association of Muslim Professionals said, "We have done several similar job fairs in the country and have placed more than 15000 candidates, Our Job Fairs are attended by people of all faith and communities. 50% of the candidates are Muslim and the other half are non-Muslim. From those fairs, who get jobs, among them, the number of Muslims and non-Muslims is almost equal. This means, Muslims also get jobs if they get the opportunity. "
They say that, despite the qualifications, Muslims do not get the opportunity to work because such opportunities do not reach out to them. According to Mr. Sheikh, "If there is an educated person in a family, then they can show the way to young people how to get jobs. Most of the Muslim families don’t have people to guide these young Job Seekers! That doesn’t mean there is lack of talent among Muslim children. The only thing they need is guidance and support"
The qualification of Muslim job applicants is no way lesser than the eligibility criteria, it got proved on this job fair and how true the statement of Mr. Sheikh is.
An official of the marketing team of the 50 public institutions interviewing job seekers, said, "The candidates from the morning who came for the interview by submitting the CV to us, are from all religious backgrounds. By looking at the competency level, the candidates of two religions are equal. "
Despite the qualifications, the Muslims should not deprive of the job opportunities, the organizers said that such a job fair was planned to create the field.
The initiative has been taken by the government corporation. According to the chairman PB Selim, " Anyone who is lagging behind in terms of education or socio-economic reasons naturally will also fall behind to get jobs. This is one of the reasons why minorities do not get jobs in a large number. Even the Sachar Committee also said that many organizations have an adverse attitude in providing jobs to Muslims. There is no way to deny that."
"There is a historical reason behind the fact that the Muslims are lagging behind in getting jobs," senior journalist and analyst Kazi Golam Gaus Siddiqui said.