Upset Hindus are urging Hangzhou (China) headquartered e-commerce giant Alibaba Group for immediate withdrawal from its website of doormats carrying images of Hindu deities Lord Krishna and Lord Ganesha; calling it highly inappropriate.
Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that it was shocking to visualize that Alibaba, for its mercantile greed, was apparently persuading the world to scrub/wipe the soles of their shoes before entering a building/bathroom on the faces of images of gods which Hindus worshipped.
Hindu deities Lord Ganesha and Lord Krishna, whose images were depicted on doormats sold at Alibaba website, were highly revered in Hinduism and were meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not for putting one’s feet on for cleaning or sweeping on or to “dry wet feet, grab dirt, dust and grime”, as was the case here. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees; Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, indicated.
Rajan Zed also urged Alibaba group to offer a formal apology.
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, Zed noted.
Rajan Zed further said 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.
Alibaba Group, established in 1999, reported revenue as $7,403 million in the quarter that ended June 30, a revenue growth of 56%. Its “mission” is “to make it easy to do business anywhere” and its “vision” includes “a company that lasts at least 102 years”. Jack Yun MA, a former English teacher from Hangzhou, is the Executive Chairman. It also has offices in Hong Kong, Taiwan, USA, United Kingdom, Italy, France, Germany, Netherlands, Japan, India and Australia.