Muslim airline pilot ‘sacked because of religion’

A Muslim airline pilot who was sacked after links were discovered to two suspected terrorists told an employment tribunal today that an “air of suspicion” had been created around him because of his race and religion.

The British man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was suspended by the major airline after he was arrested by the Metropolitan Police in October 2007 who were investigating two suspects. The pilot was linked to the pair through his brother who was a business partner with one of them.

The arrest led to the airline suspending his flight crewpass in order to carry out a full security review of his position which led ultimately to his dismissal in October 2010.

The pilot who is claiming racial discrimination at the hearing in Havant, Hampshire, said that he believed that he had been targeted because he was Asian and a Muslim. He said that he believed the airline had created a system specifically to handle his situation and to ensure he was removed from the company.

He said: “They had made it up to deal with my race and religion.” He said that by using terms such as “suspected terrorist”, the company “had created that air of suspicion that something was going on when it wasn’t.”

Asian Image, 24 January 2012