Saudi jails company manager for forcing worker to shave beard

Riyadh, Nov 14 (IANS) A Saudi court has sentenced a company manager to one year in jail and 900 lashes for forcing an Asian worker to shave his beard in front of the employees, the media reported on Monday.

The manager threatened to suspend the worker if he did not heed the order, Xinhua news agency reported, without giving details on the reason behind the order.

The court said its verdict was based on the psychological harms that befell the victim.

Expat workforce is in high demand in Saudi Arabia, especially for harsh jobs which have low attraction among local jobseekers.

Saudi Arabia’s population grew by 2.4 per cent to 31.52 million last year from 30.77 million in 2014, according to a report based on the Saudi Department of Statistics and Information published in February.

The number of Saudis, who make up two-thirds of the population, increased to 21.1 million last year. The number of expats rose to 10.4 million, it added.