Upset Hindus are urging Irton Holmrook (North West England) based brand Utopik for immediate withdrawal of boots carrying images of Hindu deity Lord Ganesha; calling it highly inappropriate.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada today, 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 feet. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, also urged Utopik to offer a formal apology, besides withdrawing Ganesha boots from its online store.
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 noted.
Zed further said that such trivialization of Hindu deity was disturbing to the Hindus. 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.
Utopik states to be “passionate about providing unique artwork-printed clothing, accessories and home decor to our valued customers” and calls itself “the most colourful festival, rave and casual apparel store”. Alex Tooth is the co-founder and designer. “Ganesha Combat Boots” and “Ganesha Faux Fur Boots” each were priced at $89.
In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking.