C4 bosses were under pressure today to halt alleged racism on Celebrity Big Brother with more than 15,000 complaints received about the programme.

Labour MP and former minister for Europe Keith Vaz said the broadcaster needed to take ‘effective action’ against unacceptable racist language on the show allegedly used against Bollywood star Shilpa Shetty.

He told GMTV: “The language that is being used, the way in which it is being used, the things that are being said, are just not acceptable in this day and age.”

Mr Vaz has tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM) in the House of Commons condemning the way that Shilpa has been treated on the programme as it was revealed that more than 15,000 complaints have been made to industry watchdog Ofcom and C4.

The chief executive of Carphone Warehouse Charles Dunstone has also added to the pressure on C4, telling the Times that he is reviewing the firm’s £3 million annual sponsorship of Celebrity Big Brother in the light of alleged racism in the house.

Complaints began to flood in after Jade Goody, her mother Jackiey Budden, Jack Tweed, Danielle Lloyd and Jo O’Meara allegedly began bullying the Indian actress.

In one outburst, Danielle asked Shilpa: “Do you get stubble?”

In another, Jackiey, who constantly called her ‘the Indian’, asked: “Do you live in a house or a shack?”

Tensions continued to run high in the house yesterday, with Jade branding Shilpa ‘pathetic, fake and a liar’ in a row over stock cubes.