A DOCTOR who claims he was a victim of racial discrimination was suspended by Halton Hospital after he lied about being on TV's Blind Date, a tribunal was told.
Sushant Varma, 32, was said to have made a list of claims to staff that he could not prove while working at the Runcorn hospital.
Among these was a claim that he was offered a bribe by someone who looked like the vice-chancellor of Sheffield University - where Dr Varma studied - to hand over incriminating documents about a lecturer at the institution.
The Liverpool hearing was also told that Dr Varma told staff he had gone to auditions for Channel Four's Big Brother and wrongly claimed he had appeared on Blind Date.
The tribunal also heard that the trainee house doctor had an e-mail address of firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Varma's claims led the North Cheshire Health Trust to decide he was unable to become a senior house officer.
The trust said this was because they were concerned he was unable to satisfy their standards of honesty and trustworthiness.
However, Dr Varma claims the charges against him were a smokescreen for an 'old boys' arrangement between the university and the hospital to get rid of him.
He is claiming unfair dismissal, race discrimination, sex discrimination, protected disclosure and breach of contract.
The tribunal was also told that he changed his name to James Bond after leaving Halton Hospital before reverting to his original name.
Dr Varma said he used different names to make multiple job applications for the post of junior house doctor in a bid to highlight racism within the NHS.
Concerns were raised after a complaint was made by a nurse over a medicinal dosage given to a patient.
After a hearing into the matter, hospital managers looked into some of his claims, including the Blind Date boast.
During the investigation, a number of e-mails were sent from Dr Varma's computer in Sheffield at a house he rented out, making allegations against the hospital. The e-mails were sent under the name Matthew Johnson.
Dr Varma was suspended in March 2002 after eight months in the job. He later took an overdose of paracetamol.
He appeared before the hospital's medical director, Dr Gerry Murphy, in May that year and repeated the Blind Date claim. However, by then the trust had written to the producers of the programme who confirmed he had never appeared on the show.
Richard Brayley, on behalf of the trust, told Dr Varma: 'For the third time you said you were a contestant and picked one of the three girls. But her father did not allow her to go on the date because of your colour and the show was not broadcast. Why did you lie?'
The hearing continues.