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PoliticsWorldGanesha can't be fashion accessory, Hindu rights activist tells US brand

Ganesha can’t be fashion accessory, Hindu rights activist tells US brand

Hindus in South Dakota are urging “the largest retailer of cufflinks”, as the brand CuffLinks advertises itself, and located in Sioux Falls, to withdraw forthwith figurines of Ganesha shaped as cufflinks, calling it highly inappropriate. Hindu activist Rajan Zed said in a statement in Nevada today that Ganesha was greatly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to secure the cuffs of dress shirts, misused as a fashion statement or thrown around loosely.

CuffLinks — which claims to partner with Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Hudsons Bay, Disney, Star Wars and Marvel — should not be in the business of religious appropriation, sacrilege and belittling sacred Hindu deity, the activist said. This fashion accessory trivialises the venerated Lord Ganesha, Zed,the president of Universal Society of Hinduism, said.

Zed stressed that inappropriate use of sacred Hindu deities or concepts or symbols or icons for mercantile or other agenda was not okay, as it hurt devotees in the community. He urged CuffLinks to offer a formal besides withdrawing the $ 940 worth Ganesha Cufflinks from its website. 

Hinduism is the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.2 billion adherents and a rich philosophical school of thought, which should not be taken frivolously, Zed said in his communiqué to the merchandise brand. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Zed noted.

Zed said that Hindus believed in free artistic expression and speech as much as anybody else if not more, but faith was something sacred and attempts at trivialising it hurt the followers.

Zed is of the view that insensitive handling of faith traditions sometimes resulted in pillaging serious spiritual doctrines and revered symbols.

In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking. The Made in US Ganesha Cufflinks are claimed to be made with 925 sterling silver and intricately hand-painted with enamel. 

CuffLinks, founded in 1999, describes itself as “the mens accessories marketplace” and “Details for the well-dressed man.”

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