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Michelin-starred Indian Chef Could Face Prosecution in Dubai for Islamophobic Tweet

The Michelin-starred chef operated the award-winning Rang Mahal India restaurant at Dubai’s JW Marriot Marquis Hotel.

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Updated:June 13, 2018, 5:42 PM IST
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Michelin-starred Indian Chef Could Face Prosecution in Dubai for Islamophobic Tweet
Michelin-starred chef Atul Kochhar. (Reuters)
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New Delhi: Celebrity chef Atul Kochhar may face prosecution in Dubai for his Islamophobic tweet.

According to Riyadh-based English daily Arab News, who talked to a lawyer regarding UAE laws, "Online comments found to be spreading sectarian hate or racism, especially in connection with Islam and Muslims, are a criminal offense and the chef can be prosecuted."

The lawyer, Yamini Rajesh told Arab News that the UAE’s anti-discriminatory law criminalises all forms of discrimination on all grounds of religion, belief, sect, faith, creed, race, color, or ethnic origin.

"UAE law can also hold employers responsible for ensuring their employees follow the rules," Rajesh addded.

The Michelin-starred chef operated the award-winning Rang Mahal India restaurant at Dubai’s JW Marriot Marquis Hotel.

The hotel has terminated Kochhar's employment. "Following the recent comments made by Chef Atul Kochhar, we have taken the decision to end our agreement with him for Rang Mahal. With the termination of our agreement, Chef Atul will no longer be associated with the restaurant," Bill Keffer, the general manager of JW Marriott Marquis Hotel was quoted saying by Gulf News.

Kochhar faced criticism after he took a dig at Chopra for her tweet over a Quantico episode that portrayed Hindu nationalists as terrorists, the Khaleej Times reported on Tuesday.

“It's sad to see that you have not respected the sentiments of Hindus who have been terrorised by Islam over 2,000 years. Shame on You (sic),” the chef tweeted on Sunday.

However, he later deleted the tweet and put out an apology, saying the "major error" was "made in the heat of the moment on Sunday".

"There is no justification for my tweet... I fully recognise my inaccuracies that Islam was founded around 1,400 years ago and I sincerely apologise. I am not Islamophobic, I deeply regret my comments that have offended many," he wrote.

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| Edited by: Aditya Nair
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