A Muslim police officer is suing his force, claiming he was forced out of his job when colleagues laughed at his beard and called him a “f***ing Paki”.
Police constable David Iqbal alleges he has been a victim of race discrimination at Bedfordshire Police force since 2006, where white colleagues have openly teased him that they were better than police from ethnic minority backgrounds.
Iqbal claimed this behaviour eventually led to a “smear and witch-hunt campaign” against him by fellow officers at Luton, resulting in a series of complaints about his performance.
In 2006 eight officers presented negative statements about Iqbal’s work but he was later cleared, following CCTV evidence. In February 2008 he lodged grievances against colleagues. His statement was subsequently leaked to his colleagues.
Iqbal was sacked in August 2008, not long after he returned to work from a nine month leave of absence on full pay, due to depression.
A source at Bedfordshire Police claimed Iqbal was sacked because he was “not cut out to be a police officer”, according to the Daily Mail.
A spokesman told the newspaper: “We can’t comment on a case that is yet to be heard but the evidence will speak for itself.”
The legal action comes at a time when the police force is already under scrutiny for alleged racism, with the Metropolitan Police fighting accusations of operating an“apartheid culture”.