Australian jewelery firm apologizes & removes Lord “Ganesha anklet” within 24-hours of protest by Hindu leader Rajan Zed
Byron Bay (New South Wales) headquartered Heart Mala Sacred Jewellery, has apologized and withdrawn anklet, carrying image of Hindu deity Lord Ganesha, from sales within 24-hours of Hindu protest, which called it “highly inappropriate”.
Haidee Turner, founder-owner-designer of Heart Mala Jewellery, in emails to Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who spearheaded the protest, wrote: “I have deleted this product immediately from my website and will recall the ones I’ve sold and will no longer make them. I’m very sorry if I have caused offense by my uneducated actions in creating this product… I apologize again for the harm or offense I unintentionally caused”.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, thanked Heart Mala Jewellery and Turner for understanding the concerns of Hindu community which thought image of Lord Ganesha on such a product was highly insensitive.
Rajan Zed suggested that Heart Mala Jewellery and other companies should 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.
Zed had said that Lord Ganesha was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to adorn one’s ankles. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 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, Rajan Zed had noted.
In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking.