Social media has been abuzz over a post by an employee of HDFC Life. He wrote in his post about the possibility of holding a referendum in India to decide whether Muslims should be given citizenship.
Irate HDFC Bank customers are threatening to close their accounts with the bank after their response to a controversial post on Facebook written by an employee of HDFC Life. In the post, the employee talks about the possibility of holding a referendum in India to decide whether Muslims should be given citizenship.
The post by the HDFC Life employee was brought to light by Uzair Hasan Rizvi – a journalist with news agency AFP. He tagged HDFC's customer care handle on Twitter to register his protest.
In the tweet, he said, "Hello @HDFCBank_Cares this person (name withheld) claims to work for @HDFCLIFE wants a referendum on religion. His post is both Islamophobic & Xenophobic His views reflect hatred, as a Muslim, I will have to think twice before using ur services. Ppl like him will be biased to me."
Uzair has since protected access to his tweets.
group, we strongly condemn such divisive and insensitive comments /views. -Zubin (2/2)— HDFC Bank (@HDFCBank_Cares) May 21, 2019
The post itself and the reply by HDFC have since put the cat among the pigeons.
Moneycontrol couldn't independently verify the original post on Facebook as the person's profile is inaccessible.
"At HDFC Life, we strongly condemn such divisive and insensitive comments/views. We have taken strict action against the individual for violating our code of conduct/social media policy and he has been suspended, pending investigation," said an official spokesperson of HDFC Life.
However, screenshots of the post in question have been doing rounds on Twitter and Facebook.
Supporters of the post are saying that the bank should not take any action against the employee as he is just exercising his freedom of expression.
You, sir, are a hypocrite. However distasteful, it's his opinion and he has expressed it on his social media account. Where is the freedom of expression?@HDFCLIFE would lost my respect if they take any action against the employee. Need to stand with him.— Himanshu Mishra (@himanshualive7) May 22, 2019
Let us know about ur appropriate action... We will help u in reducing ur workloads— Ajit Pratap Singh (@jhallia_vairagi) May 22, 2019
Sir, when a particular sect welcomes plebiscite in J&K, then why not this point of view. Anyway the threat u r giving shows a fake hinduphobia. Pls note, any corporate employee has to adhere to an employee code of conduct. Only if he violates it, can he be sacked. #Getwellsoon— Dipti.Kane (@DiptiKane) May 22, 2019
Others have pointed at the hateful content in the employee's post and have said that the company should take action against him.
Please look in to it .And take necessary action on him !— Aaqib shaikh (@shaikh_aaqib11) May 21, 2019
I am NRE account holder with @HDFC_Bank planning to close after this hatred mindset— ahsanulhaque احسان الحق (@ahskhan) May 22, 2019
Communal hatred is not covered under freedom of expression! Under Indian law!— Ashwin Baindur (@ashwin_baindur) May 21, 2019
Along with people expressing their views, many trolls have also attacked Rizvi. Others have even called for his arrest.
Great step, there is no space for hate in our beloved country. Propagating ideas of communal division is not free speech it's a hate speech in all sense, a disciplinary action is must #HDFCBank_Cares— Deshbhakt Pranav Kumar Jha (@pranavkumarjh18) May 22, 2019
@MumbaiPolice these is no bar to express an opinion and this man @RizviUzair should be arrested and investigated for his motives. Could be an isi paid plant.— Manish_chauhan12 (@Chauhan12Manish) May 22, 2019(The story has been updated with HDFC Life's response. On request from the person in question, we have updated this report to omit the name.)