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Sikh wins racism case against UK police

February 26, 2008 17:02 IST

A Sikh policeman in Britain has won a racial discrimination case against the Greater Manchester Police that rejected 12 applications from him to join it.

Sangram Singh-Bhacker, 40, is likely to be awarded a five-figure compensation by the tribunal, which noted that he was a qualified, physically fit officer who had been accepted by the Wiltshire, Merseyside, West Yorkshire and Cheshire forces, as well as British Transport Police, his current employer. Yet Manchester police had blocked his applications despite a white officer of similar age and experience being allowed to transfer into the force.

Singh-Bhacker, who comes from an Indian family in Manchester, had been trying to join the police in his home city since 1990, but was repeatedly refused.

In February last year Andrew Marston, its head of personnel, told him in a letter: 'I am not prepared to consider you as a potential transferee with the GMP now or in the future.'

Singh-Bhacker told The Times: 'I had had my suspicions over the years and that letter confirmed it. I thought it was personal and racial. I decided to go to an employment tribunal because that was the only way I was going to get any answers.'

The GMP said that it was 'disappointed and unhappy' with the tribunal's finding.

A spokesman said: 'We actively encourage applications from minority ethnic communities.'

Singh-Bhacker, married with two sons, said that the judgment marked an end to his battle and that he would no longer try to join the Manchester force.

He said: 'I love my city. I wanted to work in the city as a policeman, to be close to my family and especially my mother, who was ill for a long time until she died last year.'

The compensation hearing will be held next month.

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