Page last updated at 17:03 GMT, Thursday, 18 March 2010

Job advert for Indian in Bristol office was illegal

An online advert for job applicants "preferably of Indian origin" broke the law, the Equality and Human Rights Commission has said.

The Bristol-based role was being advertised by IT company Torry Harris, which has offices in Almondsbury, near the city, and Bangalore in India.

The company was looking for a candidate with a minimum of six years of IT experience.

The advert has since been removed from the recruitment website.

Part of the advert stated: "The person should be a UK citizen with security clearance from the UK Government. Preferably of Indian origin."

Monmouth Conservative MP David Davies reported the advert to the Equality and Human Rights Commission after being informed by a constituent.

We will not tolerate any form of discrimination, racial or otherwise
Torry Harris

He said: "It was definitely racist. If a company had put up an advert like this saying only white people need apply then the commission would have been all over them before you could say diversity."

The Equality and Human Rights Commission on Thursday said it would write to both Mr Davies and Torry Harris to highlight the advert's illegality.

A commission spokeswoman said: "It's totally illegal to specify a nationality in a job advert.

"We will be writing to the company concerned and asking them to take the advert down."

A Torry Harris spokeswoman said the matter was undergoing a "thorough internal investigation".

She added: "We have employees whose ethnic origins are varied and diverse. We will not tolerate any form of discrimination, racial or otherwise, whether it is of a positive or a negative nature.

"If any employee or employees are found to have acted improperly in any way, shape or form, we will instigate disciplinary proceedings without hesitation."

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