Pakistani clothing brand apologises after sharing morphed picture of Hindu God

On Thursday (June 17), a popular Instagram page by the name of ‘Hindu Samata’ informed that a leading Pakistani womenswear brand, Generation, had mocked Hinduism by putting up a morphed image of a Hindu deity in their office. The clothing brand named ‘Generation’ has a following of over 1.2 million on Instagram.

In its post, Hindu Samata said, “This famous Pakistani brand put up a disrespectful poster mocking a Hindu deity in their office. Pakistan has blasphemy laws that only apply to non-Muslims. Hindus can be imprisoned under false charges for saying anything about Islam/Muslims. This page is using their large following to encourage marginalisation of minorities.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/CQL9e1ZLw-J/?utm_source=ig_embed&ig_rid=e7f5a37b-3c44-429f-b82a-774a9fb29357

In its Instagram story, Generation had morphed the image of the Hindu deity and replaced the ‘astras’ with laptop and other items. The desecration of the Hindu Goddess by a brand, founded by a Pakistani husband-wife duo named Saad and Nosheen Rahman, did not go unnoticed.

Hindu rights activist points out the dual standards of the Pakistani justice system

On Wednesday (June 16), Hindu rights activist Kapil Dev took notice of the matter and tweeted, “Just learned from a friend that @GENERATION_PK posted morphed image of a Hindu goddess on its Instagram handle, later issued an apology. “

He further added, “Just wondering if a mere apology is enough to get away from this? Tum karo tau apology, aur hum na karen tau bhi blasphemy (When you do it, then you can get away with an apology. Even when we don’t do it, we are still charged with blasphemy).”

On being reminded that the situation would be different if a Hindu was to desecrate the Islamic Faith, Kapil Dev emphasised, “Exactly! We live in a hypocrite society where principles matter only for personal gains and interests.”

Clothing brand tenders apology for oversight and insensitive image

Following the outrage on social media, Generation tendered an apology on Friday (June 18). In a statement, the womenswear brand said, “A few days ago a grave oversight occurred at the Generation HQ. An ignorant and insensitive image became public that was hurtful to our patrons, especially for those that represent the white in our flag (referring to minorities).”

It further added, “We are so so sorry! We pledge to strive to be better, to make better and more informed choices. We also pledge to conduct regular sensitivity workshops at the HQ to learn more about the people we share our country with. We hope you can forgive us, and that we can grow to be more sensitive and mindful as a community.”

Hindu rights activist warns Pakistani clothing brand of legal action

On Saturday (June 19), Hindu rights activist Kapil Dev took to Twitter to respond to the apology note by Generation. He said, “This apology is insufficient. We have spoken to the lawyers and considering legal action against the brand. You cannot get away with a mere apology.”

He pointed out that the presence of a morphed poster of a Hindu deity in its office was a reflection of the lack of Hindu employees in managerial positions. “This insensitivity shows the brand management lacks a diverse team. How many Hindu employees (management) does the brand have?” Kapil Dev inquired.

Under Section 295 (C) of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC), the blasphemy law states, ”Whoever by words, either spoken or written, or by visible representation or by any imputation, innuendo, or insinuation, directly or indirectly, defiles the sacred name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) shall be punished with death, or imprisonment for life, and shall also be liable to fine.” But this law is selectively used to target religious minority communities and seldom invoked against Muslims for desecrating other Faith.

Source : OpIndia

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