An Adelaide Post Office accused of discriminating against people from India was actually trying to help them, it has been revealed.
Australia Post customers were up in arms over a city store that said it could not take passport photos for Indians.
A sign outside the store said: “Due to our lighting and quality of photo background we unfortunately CANNOT take INDIAN photos.”
It advised Indian customers to go to a different store at another location.
People immediately accused the post office of being racist, asking why they had singled out Indians and not other nationalities.
Others said the store should have used the money spent on the sign to improve their lighting.
But Australia Post explained that photos for Indian documents had different requirements to Australia’s which meant numbers of passport and visa applications bearing photos from the Adelaide store had been dismissed.
This had caused inconvenience and delays for people seeking approval for their travel documents. Rather than risk people having their documents rejected, Australia Post staff had redirected Indian customers to give them a better chance of success.
“While the wording of this sign is inexcusable, we understand the Indian Consulate had rejected a number of customers' passport photos provided by this Post Office,” a spokesperson said.
“We have reached out to the High Commission of India to understand the issue with the photographs, so we can rectify this urgently.”