British Hindus Urged to Protest, Boycott France Over Shoes with Image of Lord Rama

June 9, 2005

Source: The Hindu

Wire Service: PTI

On June 9, 2005 the Press Trust of India reported, "Indignant at a French manufacturer's refusal to remove a deity from its designer shoes Hindu organisations in the UK, asked all devotees worldwide on Wednesday to boycott all French-made goods and participate en-masse in a protest rally outside the French embassy here on June 12. The move came after the French manufacturer Minelli refused to respond to requests for withdrawal of the sale of designer shoes with images of Lord Rama. The Forum has also demanded that Indian Government should stop buying Mirage planes from the French Government, write to the international Olympic committee that selecting Paris as a venue for 2012 Olympics will not be in keeping with the ethos of human rights and religious freedom and stop flying with Air France...'Hinduism is a very tolerant religion and we have no problems if our images are used in a respectful manner.' [said Ramesh Kallidai, Secretary General of the Hindu Forum of Britain.] 'But to use the image of Lord Rama on a shoe, when we don't even wear shoes inside our temples, is disrespectful and disgraceful. It has hurt the sentiments of over one billion Hindus in the world and yet Minelli have not agreed to withdraw the sale'...Sikh community in Britain also lent its support to the campaign."