Greater Vancouver based athleisure brand NoMiNoU has apologized and withdrawn legging and capris, carrying images of Hindu deity Lord Ganesha and the sacred syllable ‘Om,’ from sales within 24-hours of the Hindu protest; which called it “highly inappropriate.”
The legging and capri pattern (below) were part of NoMiNoU’s “Karma Collection” and were priced at $89.99 and $79.99, with the description “Allow this positive energy to help you reach higher consciousness”.
Rajan Zed (who spearheaded the protest), President of Universal Society of Hinduism, said Lord Ganesha was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to adorn one’s legs. Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.
Jullianna Charlton, Founder and Creative Director of NoMiNoU, in an email to Hindu statesman Rajan Zed (who spearheaded the protest), formally apologized and said to “note our actions going forward to showcase NoMiNoU’s intention to respect all cultures.”
In Hinduism, Lord Ganesha is worshipped as the god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking. Om is the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.
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.