GEORGE TOWN, Jan 13 ― The Penang Hindu Association (PHA) is calling on the authorities to ban the sale of T-shirts and prayer items bearing the images of Hindu deities as Thaipusam draws near.
PHA president P. Murugiah said some retail outlets in Penang, Kedah and several other states were selling these items with images of Hindu deities emblazoned on the packaging.
He said the items have images of Lord Ganesha, Lord Shiva, Lord Krishna, Amman and Lord Murugan on the packaging.
“After these items were opened and used, the packaging with images of the deities are thrown in the rubbish bin and this is offensive to Hindus,” he said in a statement today.
He added that anything that is offensive to any region should not be allowed in multiracial Malaysia.
He believed some of these items were imported and some were locally made prayer items such as incense, camphor, sandalwood powder and lamp oil.
“This is not only offensive to Hindus but a cheap and degrading sales gimmick during Thaipusam and other Hindu festivals,” he said.
He accused these retailers of using religion for commercial gain.
He urged all Hindu devotees to stop buying these prayer items during Hindu festivals and for home use.