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Hindu, Muslim leaders offer support to UK man over Christian cross ban

London , Wed, 20 Apr 2011 ANI

London, Apr 20 (ANI): Hindu, Muslim and Sikh leaders have voiced their support for UK electrician Colin Atkinson who faces the sack for displaying a small cross in his company van.


The religious leaders joined former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey to demand that the 64-year-old grandfather be allowed to mark Easter by displaying a tiny palm cross in his work van, reports the Daily Mail.


"Everybody has the right to preach their own religion. I don't see how anyone can take offence at this cross, the employers are definitely in the wrong," said Niranjan Vakhaira, president of the Hindu Charitable Trust in Leeds, West Yorks.


"Every human being has the right to follow his faith, as long as it doesn't harm anybody," he said.


"If it hasn't harmed anybody then I don't see the logic in telling him to remove it," he added.


"I can't see any problem at all in displaying this symbol. I can't see how this would offend anybody," said Ghayasuddin Siddiqui, of the Muslim Institute.


"I really don't think people should become so touchy about these things," he said.


"You have to respect other people's feelings and beliefs," he added.


"We find it difficult to understand why an employer would terminate someone's employment for having a crucifix in their vehicle," said a spokesman for the Sikh Education Council.


"We suggest the employer should rethink their actions in this particular case.


"Sikhs believe in freedom of expression and freedom of belief with respect," the spokesman said.


"As long as what someone is doing is doing it with respect for other people we would support their right to practice as they see fit," he added. (ANI)


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