Australian Hindus stage protest against meat advertisement featuring Lord Ganesha

ANI | Updated: Sep 24, 2017 22:40 IST

Sydney [Australia], Sep 24 (ANI): Hindus in Australia staged protests in the major cities on Sunday to express their anguish about objectionable portrayal of Lord Ganesha in advertisement by a livestock farmers' lobbying organisation in the country.

People in huge numbers took to streets to express their angst against an advertisement that the Indian community described as "highly insulting" in its depiction of the Hindu deity Lord Ganesha.

Protesters formed human chain in Sydney and in four other cities.

Children were seen wearing Ganesha masks, as their parents used placards reading "Stop insulting Hindu Gods".

Organised by the India Forum Australia community, the demonstration "Stand for Ganesha" was staged in five cities -- Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth cities to register a strong objection over the desecration and generate public awareness about the Hindu deity revered by millions of people in India and foreign shores.

Earlier, the Indian High Commission in Canberra had issued a 'demarche' to three departments of Australian government- Foreign Affairs, Communications and Agriculture of Australia- over the controversial Meat and Livestock Australia advertisement that hurts the religious sentiments of the Indian community.

Taking note of the protests of the Indian community in Australia, the Indian High Commission stated that the advertisement by Meat and Livestock Australia was "offensive" and "hurt the religious sentiments of the Indian community".

"In a video advertisement released by Meat and Livestock Australia recently, Lord Ganesha along with other religious figures is found to be 'toasting lamb', which the Indian community consider to be offensive and hurting their religious sentiments", the statement added.

"The consulate general of India in Sydney has taken up the matter directly with Meat and Livestock Australia and urged them to withdraw the advertisement," the high commission said.

"A number of community associations have also registered their protest with the government of Australia and Meat and Livestock Australia."

An official diplomatic complaint was lodged after the controversial advertisement by Meat and Livestock Australia, featuring the Hindu deity Ganesha eating lamb, sparked protests by the Indian community in Australia.

However, Australia's advertising watchdog dismissed the complaints filed by Hindu groups. (ANI)