Online home-furnishings retailer “My Diva Baby” based in Sydney suburb Seven Hills; apologized and removed “Indian God Ganesha Elephant Bath Mat Set”, carrying the images of Hindu deity Lord Ganesha, within few hours of Hindu protest; which had called it “highly inappropriate”.
Krista Bridge of “My Diva Baby”, in an email to Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who spearheaded the protest, wrote: “I have removed all Ganesha content and sincerely apologise for any offence this has caused”.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, thanked “My Diva Baby” for understanding the concerns of Hindu community which thought image of Lord Ganesha on such a product was insensitive.
Rajan Zed suggested that “My Diva Baby” 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 a toilet seat cover or put your feet on. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or symbols 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 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 indicated.
Zed had stated that such trivialization of Lord Ganesha 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.
In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking.
This objectionable “Indian God Ganesha Elephant Bath Mat Set”; described as “soft and comfortable, non-slip, absorbent”; and which included a toilet seat cover, U-shaped Mat, rectangle mat; was priced at $45.
“My Diva Baby”, whose tagline is “Simple, Stylish, Stunning”; sells bed, windows, bathrooms, etc., related products. Its goal is “to bring a little piece of happiness into everyone’s home”.