Hindus have expressed dismay at the reported ejection of Māori member of New Zealand parliament for refusing to wear tie.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that New Zealand needed to grow up and show some maturity before ejecting a Māori MP from the Parliament which was built on land discovered by his ancestors.
Inflicting the dress code and fashion traditions imported from Europe on the original settlers of New Zealand was simply unjust and should be universally condemned; Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out.
Rajan Zed urged New Zealand Governor-General Patsy Reddy, Parliament Speaker Trevor Mallard, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson and House Leader Chris Hipkins to offer public apology to Māori Party Co-Leader Rawiri Waititi and to Māori people in general for attempts to force an imported fashion item on the locals.
Parliaments were there to make the laws and not to issue fashion judgements. Moreover, nobody should impose their doctrine on others in a free country; Zed indicated.
It was really worrisome for other minorities when they saw a Māori elected representative, whose ancestors were first settlers of New Zealand, maltreated in the nation’s parliament like this; Rajan Zed noted.
Zed urged Roman Catholic Cardinal John Atcherley Dew, Anglican Archbishop/Primate Philip Richardson, Presbyterian Church General Assembly Moderator Taimoanaifakaofo Kaio, and other New Zealand religious leaders to openly come out in support Māori brothers and sisters and condemn this act of unfairness.
I was never forced to wear a tie or a collar when I read invocations in United States Senate, US House of Representatives, various State Senates and State Houses of Representatives, county commissions and city councils across USA; Rajan Zed stated.
Why New Zealand Parliament was giving so much importance to an impractical decorative fabric (whose traces went back to Croatian mercenaries), which neither provided warmth on a cold day and nor covered one’s nakedness? Zed asked. Business magnate Sir Richard Branson reportedly described the ties as a symbol of oppression. Moreover, ties were said to be health and safety hazards; Zed added.
Rajan Zed also urged Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier to seriously look into this unnecessary and antiquated tradition of wearing ties.