Amazon.com, said to be world’s largest online retailer, has seemingly removed skateboards carrying images of Hindu deity Lord Ganesha from its website after Hindus protested.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who spearheaded the protest, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, thanked Amazon.com for understanding and feeling the concerns of Hindu community, which thought images of Lord Ganesha on skateboards were highly inappropriate.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, however, said that an official apology from Amazon.com and its President Jeffrey P. Bezos to the upset Hindu community was still due as this was not the first time for the company to offer such products which were deemed offensive by Hindu devotees.
Zed suggested Amazon.com and other corporations to send their senior executives for training in religious and cultural sensitivity so that they had an understanding of the feelings of customers and communities when introducing new products or launching advertising campaigns.
Rajan Zed noted that Hindu deities Ganesha, Vishnu, Shiva, Lakshmi and Kali were highly revered in Hinduism and were meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to put your feet-legs on or wear on your legs or sleep-sit on it or to hold your cigarettes. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the faithful.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken frivolously. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Zed indicated.
Rajan Zed pointed out that such trivialization of Hindu deities was disturbing to the Hindus world over. Hindus were for free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at trivializing it hurt the followers, Zed added.
Zed further said that it was shocking to visualize that a company like Amazon.com, for its mercantile greed, would apparently sell anything without caring for the feelings of a considerable segment of world’s population.
Amazon.com, Inc., a Fortune 500 company founded in 1994, and headquartered in Seattle (USA), claims to offer earth’s biggest selection.