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The man-management of Clearly Business Solutions Limited for Shell (UK) by Mr Kashif Irfan

On 10 October 2014 I re-applied to Clearly Business Solutions Limited for a petrol station job by email and got an immediate response asking me to fill in a long-drawn out questionnaire. I gave Shell Wigmore (Lonsdale) as my first preference site but Mr Kashif Irfan (the Managing Director) telephoned me asking if I could go to Shell Detling on the A249 between the M2 motorway and Maidstone in Kent. I went immediately and spoke to the Site Manager who gave me a form to sign and I started work the very next day. Everything seemed to be working out fine until I found out on 3 November 2014 that I was being shifted to another site, Shell Highland rapidly. This site was not as good a site to be working in as Shell Detling (it lay on the opposite side of the road to the Detling Site and did not have a Bakery). On questioning this decision and reminding the managers that if anything I should be transferred to Lonsdale which was 5 minutes walk from my home, I was told that I had not been able to do the multi-tasking of handling the Till transactions and simultaneously preparing and managing the bakery. I was very surprised by these assertions and so decided that it had to be challenged for I would not be able to pass my probation period if I accepted this charge. I felt that I had done my job adequately within the time I had. Finally I sent the following email to Mr Kashif Irfan:

On 4 November 2014 21:15, Shan Panigrahi wrote: cc Dear Kashif 1. I refer to our email exchanges today following which I spent time through text exchanges with Sarah to ascertain what I have done wrong in my work for the company since 11 October 2014. 2. These discussions led to no agreement being reached on where I have failed in my duties and therefore where my future shifts should be with regard to your original assertion that I had somehow failed to carry out my normal tasks at Shell Detling to an adequate level of satisfaction in the shifts that I had worked. The charge is therefore unproven and if allowed to stand affects my probation adversely. It is therefore totally unacceptable to me that I should allow this stain on my work performance and reputation to stay on record. Accordingly, I wish to have the matter thoroughly investigated by the company now as a grievance that I am hereby registering with you. In the view of an Employment Tribunal your actions could well be viewed as being part of a process of Constructive Dismissal being perpetrated by the company on me. 2. This email is to inform you that pending this investigation of my work performance to date I shall not be available for any further shifts of work for Clearly Business Solutions Limited. 3. Please acknowledge receipt of this email within 7 days with an indication on how you wish to resolve the matter. Yours sincerely Shantanu Panigrahi

Mr Kashif Irfan replied as follows:

Kashif Irfan To me 4 November 2014 at 9:56 PM Dear Shan, Thank you for your email. I acknowledge receipt of your grievance and in order to investigate further, I would like to hold a grievance meeting with you at Shell Highland on Thursday the 6th Nov 2014 at 5:30am. Kindly confirm that you will be attending. Pending the investigation of your work performance, you are still required to attend as per your rota to work as normal. Any unauthorized absence will be treated as a willful refusal to follow reasonable management instruction and will be subject to the disciplinary action. Any unauthorized absence will also be unpaid. Under the Employment Rights Act 1996 employees who start work on or after 6 April 2012 will, in most cases, have to complete two years’ service with their employer before they can make a claim for unfair dismissal. I note that you have only been with the company a few weeks. Sincerely, Kashif Irfan Managing Director Clearly Business Solutions Limited

I have requested the Ashford Employment Tribunal for advice on whether this is a suitable matter that falls within its jurisdiction to consider, as follows:

me To 5 November 2014 at 12:54 PM To The Employment Tribunal 1st Floor/Ashford House 15 County Square Ashford Kent TN23 1YB Tel: 01233 621346; 5 November 2014 Dear Sir Madam 1. I am hereby lodging a Claim for Constructive Dismissal against Clearly Business Solutions Limited on the basis of the attached document [FrKashifIrfan(ShellClearlyContract)4Nov2014e] where Mr Kashif Irfan has asked me to attend a meeting to hear my grievance at 5.30 am in the morning, which I consider to be most unreasonable. 2. Please let me know if there are any time limits that are applicable to the consideration of this case as Mr Irfan seems to suggest, and if not, inform me of the Tribunal Fee that I need to pay to proceed with this claim of either Constructive Dismissal or Breach of Contract. 3. Should the tribunal not be able to consider this matter, please let me know if a claim for Breach of Contract can be pursued in the County Court. 4. A reply today would be greatly appreciated in view of the fact that I am being asked to continue working despite the fact that my grievance is not being properly considered by Clearly Business Solutions Limited. Thank you for your kind consideration. Yours sincerely Dr Shantanu Panigrahi • 1 Attachment • FrKashifIrfan(ShellClearlyContract)4Nov2014e.docx

5 November 2014 17.10 hours Update The Ashford Tribunal has written back to me as follows:

Dr Shantanu Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited (3) Womack, Chris (TS, Ashford) To me CC Womack, Chris (TS, Ashford) 5 November 2014 at 4:50 PM Dear Sir / Madam , To register a claim with the Employment Tribunal Service , you will need to Register your claim with the Croydon Administration Centre either electronically, using the on Line ET 1 Form , or contacting them by phone to have the hard-copy ET 1 Form sent to your address. Your E.mail letter to Ashford Hearing Centre, in its present format, does not constitute as a registered claim with the Tribunal. For information I supply the following details ; Croydon Tele 020 8667 9131 E.mail Thank you for your enquiry. Yours faithfully Chris Womack 16.50pm 05/11/14 Clerk to the Tribunal Service Tel: 01233 621346 Direct Dial: 01233 651617 Fax: – 08707 617668 (old 01233 624423) E.mail: Web: I am not authorised to bind the Ministry of Justice contractually, nor to make representations or other statements which may bind the Ministry in any way via electronic means.

12 November 2014 Update: Following days of email and text exchanges, I received the following email from Mr Kashif Irfan this morning:

On Wednesday, 12 November 2014, 6:36, Kashif Irfan wrote: Failure to carry out normal tasks at Shell Detling Dear Shan, I have noticed that you have yet again posted the blog online containing internal Company matters despite several warnings. As explained earlier many times that this behavior is considered gross misconduct. You have repeatedly ignored the management instructions and have left the Company with no choice but to suspend you from employment pending a disciplinary hearing. You are hereby suspended from employment without notice and/or any pay in lieu. One of the Company managers will be emailing you shortly to arrange a disciplinary hearing. Best regards, Kashif Irfan Managing Director Clearly Business Solutions Limited

I replied by email as follows:

Failure to carry out normal tasks at Shell Detling (18) me To Kashif Irfan 12 November 2014 at 8:31 AM Dear Kashif 1. I do not associate with people who I consider to be a bunch of criminals running a business – according to my definition of criminality that I have exposed through my investigations using internet communications and mobile phone and which is now blogged. The person who you appoint to investigate whether I have committed any disciplinary offence would have to consider each and every text and email that I have sent and received from my interactions with members of staff of Clearly Business Solutions Limited. He or she will also have to consider that the reason that you have written this email to me at 6.36 am this morning when you demonstrably failed to reply to my email within the two hours that I allowed you to reconsider the contractual situation concerning my blog last night is because I have asked for the grievance meeting to be postponed until 19 November 2014 so as to expose Sarah who would otherwise be forced to allocate me shifts on her return from holiday. 2. Before the investigation proceeds, I should emphasise that I must be placed on full pay of 40 hours per week because I thoroughly dispute your allegation that I have committed an act of gross misconduct. I gave you plenty of opportunity to state explicitly what it was that is written in my blog that brings the company and its directors into disrepute. You failed to state your objections. The law allows for whistle blowers who expose criminality within organisations and institutions. Any attempt to institute a disciplinary process and give me a disciplinary record will be challenged by in a court of law on these grounds. 3. Please let me have your immediate reply to this email so that I consider seeking the assistance of a solicitor. Yours sincerely Shantanu Panigrahi

12 November 2014, 10.00 am Update: I have now sent the following email to Mr Kashif Irfan.

Failure to carry out normal tasks at Shell Detling (19) me To Kashif Irfan 12 November 2014 at 9:43 AM To Mr Kashif Irfan Managing Director Clearly Business Solutions Limited In view of the lack of a prompt reply from you, I hereby resign my employment at Clearly Business Solutions Limited. Yours sincerely Shantanu Panigrahi

17 November 2014, 17.20 hrs Update: I have sent the following email to Clearly Business Solutions Limited this afternoon:

Employment Tribunal Proceedings: Dr Shantanu Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited me To; CBSL HR Today at 3:34 PM To Clearly Business Solutions Limited. Dear Sirs, 1. This email is to inform you that in view of the absence of a reply from you to my last two emails, I have now completed the ACAS Early Conciliation Notification Form (Case Reference Number R063899/14) – submitted at 15.17 on 17 November 2014, as the necessary step to proceed to the Tribunal stage. 2. For your information the ACAS Early Conciliation Support No. is 0300 123 1122. 3. Please note that I am unable to enter into any further direct discussions with you concerning this matter. Yours sincerely Shantanu Panigrahi

18 November 2014 Update: I have sent the following email to the South London Employment Tribunal in a reply on previous correspondence:

RE: Dr Shantanu Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited (10) me To LONDONSOUTHET 18 November 2014 at 3:57 PM To Mr Kevin Eaves London South Employment Tribunal Dear Mr Eaves I duly completed the On-Line Claim Form as you suggested. The Reference Number is 231144629800, the submission date being 18 November 2014 at 9.58 am. Having taken further advice it was submitted as a claim for Breach of Contract believed to be due to the fact that I had raised a work-place Grievance concerning my probation. Please let me know the Tribunal’s time-table and its next steps in the consideration of this Case. I have opted for its consideration without a Hearing, and if possible within 4 weeks. If you need any further information, please let me know by email. Thank you. Yours sincerely Dr Shantanu Panigrahi

19 November 2014 Update: The following correspondence took place with ACAS:

On Tuesday, 18 November 2014, 9:09, ACAS – SEE wrote: Acas Early Conciliation : R063899/14 : Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited Dear Dr Panigrahi, I am the conciliator for this matter and I will be in touch to discuss it and to see if you are interested in exploring the possibility of resolution. I will aim to contact you within the next few working days following this e-mail being sent. If you have any queries about conciliation and/or if you have a particular access requirement that needs a different approach, please contact me on 01252 360714 as soon as possible so that I can accommodate this. If you decide to appoint someone to deal with this matter on your behalf, please pass on this information to them and I will deal with them directly on this matter. If you need the services of an interpreter this can be arranged. Further information about our conciliation role can be found at If you would like a paper copy of this, please let me know. This service is confidential and free of charge. I look forward to speaking to you. Yours sincerely, Anita Stone Conciliator

Today I replied:

Acas Early Conciliation : R063899/14 : Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited (2) me To ACAS – SEE 19 November 2014 at 2:40 PM To Ms Anita Stone Dear Ms Stone Thank you for your email. I am obviously keen for there to be an ACAS-mediated conciliation in this employment matter. Have you now heard from Clearly Business Solutions Limited/Mr Kashif Irfan to see whether the company is amenable to such a resolution of my grievance as discussed with Josh Hudson? Yours sincerely Shantanu Panigrahi I telephoned and left a message on Ms Stone’s answerphone. She phoned me back at 4.30 pm and a 15 minute discussion took place of how I got the job and what happened at the work place. She ended by saying that she will contact the Company and that if I did not hear back from her within a week I should telephone her again.

10 Comments » 1. You called them criminals and then expected aresponse? Dude, you’re lucky they didn’t respond with a law suit and they still might. Comment by egregious_c | November 14, 2014 | Edit | Reply 2. Have you noticed how virtually every exchange and endevour you involve yourself in results in a string of email complaints and replays, and ultimately results in you not achieving a damn thing, to the extent of not being able to hold down a job as menial as petrol station attendant? Have you considered your own actions and attitudes might be having a detrimental effect on not only you, but also your family? Comment by Thomas Jones | November 15, 2014 | Edit | Reply o Quite right. He can’t hold the most menial job and it seems to be entirely his fault. We see a pattern of behavior. It begins with some misconduct which results in dismissal. Then he calls for a hearing but hen doesn’t appear amid dubious excuses. It always ends in continued dismissal or now, resignation. Why shatanu continues to post these train wrecks is beyond me. It appears to be intended as self agrandisment but only shows hopeless delusion. Comment by egregious_c | November 15, 2014 | Edit | Reply 3. THis all seems to have been precipitated by an unexpected transfer to another store because Shantanu was reportedly unable to manage both the till and bakery in a satisfactory manner. There appears to be no evidence that this transfer was disciplinary in nature. It also appears that he may have been failing to appear for asssigned duty. Rather than work this out in a fair and appropriate way, Shantanu leaves the story hanging here from 11/5 to 11/12 during whuch time he appears to have been advised that posting company business communication to this blog as gross misconduct, but continues to do so. Failing to comply, Shantanu is fairly suspended , with pending hearing. Shantanu the refers to his employers as criminals and demands a response. After no response in 2 hours Shantaanu resigns. You could sstill have that job, shantanu, but you seemed bent on utterly wrecking a job as a gas station attendant – a job about as low on the menial job scale as you can get. You’d have to be trying to loose a job like that. This isn’t a search for truth oring to reveal wrongdoing. This is sheer lunacy. Get some help. Comment by egregious_c | November 15, 2014 | Edit | Reply 4. 1.35 pm, 17 November 2014 comment-response posted: Egregious and Thomas Jones: I could not add any fresh comments on this matter because the Company started giving me the impression that my Grievances against it would be addressed in the way that I demanded and because it seemed to me that my employment had not quite been terminated by the Company by the issue of my P45 Form that would give my earnings from my work for the Company. The Company has not replied to my last two emails. There needs to be fundamental changes to the way business is conducted in this country to generate fairness and openness. For this one needs evidence of what is wrong. In working towards this aim I follow the truth path which generates reliable information. I hope this is now clear to you. Comment by shantanup | November 17, 2014 | Edit | Reply 5. Of course they haven’t replied. You publically called them criminals. Typicaally businesses have their own policies and procedures for deaaling with grievancess. You do not have any legal ground to “demand” anything. A lawyer worthy of the name would have explained that to you. It also appears you were given fair warning regarding your gross misconduct. In short, you should have been fored and it sys a great deal about this company that they offered you plenty of opportunity to recitify the situation. In fact the whole grievance appears to be entirely fabricated. It seems all they wanted was to move you to another store. This is common in that industry. The dsciplinary nature of the transfer seems wholly concocted. Comment by egregious_c | November 17, 2014 | Edit | Reply o Whether what I said on criminality in the heat of the moment and under my definition of the word rather than the State’s definition of it and then blogged here periodically as tools of the negotiating process with Clearly Business Solutions Limited (CBSL) should stay on display for the public to read as fair comment or whether I should apologise and/or remove the blog entirely is a matter for the Employment Tribunal to consider and pass judgement on as an employment issue for which proceedings are underway through the Arbitration Conciliation and Advisory Service (ACAS) – please note the 17 November 2014 17.20 hrs update to this blog. Any lawsuit taken out by CBSL or its Directors against me in the High Court or County Court will accordingly be challenged as being an abuse of the process of court, citing the proceedings of Claim No ME010463 of Medway County Court/Queens Bench Division, Royal Courts of Justice, in the Case ‘Dr Shantanu Panigrahi vs University of Greenwich’ as the relevant precedent. Comment by shantanup | November 18, 2014 | Edit | Reply 6. Your definition of criminal is immaterial. The state’s definition will take precedent. You flat-out called them criminals. You did so publically. You continue to pursue them publically, when it should be private. They could sue you, win, and crush you and your family financially. You are completely out of your mind if you think this is going to end well. Get professional help right away. Think of your family, man! I know it’s none of my business, but I cannot imagine what your wife must be going through with all of this – a husband who can’t hold even the most menial job and insists on these insane pursuits when what he really needs is conseling and medication. Get you shit together. Aplogize to your former employer, pray they don’t sue you into the stone age, shut this stupid blog down and get some frikkin help for Christ’s sake. Comment by egregious_c | November 18, 2014 | Edit | Reply o My definition of criminal is not immaterial and will take precedence for my entire blog describes a philosophy on humanity. As far as I know Clearly Business Solutions Limited or any of its Directors have not initiated any court proceedings to sue me for the contents of my blog. It needs a court judgement on what is lawful publication and what is not. If the court decides it is unlawful I will remove it. To this end I have asked the Tribunal Judge (where by paying a £160 Fee I instituted the Case for Breach of Contract today) to make an immediate ruling on the contents of this blog. I wrote: RE: Dr Shantanu Panigrahi vs Clearly Business Solutions Limited (13) me To LONDONSOUTHET Today at 5:07 PM To Mr Kevin Eaves 1. I need the Judge to make an immediate ruling on whether the following blog post that I have written ( which charts the progress of this matter publicly is fair comment and in the public interest and should therefore stay on the internet for display to the public or whether I am required to remove it as my employers indicated they would like me to do, but which I have resisted. Yours sincerely Dr Shantanu Panigrahi Comment by shantanup | November 18, 2014 | Edit | Reply 7. >>My definition of criminal is not immaterial and will take precedence for my entire blog describes a philosophy on humanity. Dude, you’re high (as we say). Philosophy doesn’t amount to much of anything in a court of law. You’re clearly deluded. Apologize to your former employer. Remove the offending posts from this blog. Pray they don’t sue you. Get some help for chrissakes. Comment by egregious_c | November 18, 2014 | Edit | Reply

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