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Depiction of Lakshmi on swim-wear at Sydney fashion show spark angry protests in India.


Hindu groups protest against the Australian designer Lisa Blue who designed swimwear featuring the image of the Hindu Goddess Lakshmi. Photo: REUTERS. Reports came in from Amritsar and Delhi, India.

Hindu goddess swimsuits at Australian Fashion Week spark angry protests

By Bonnie Malkin, Sydney 6:14PM BST 09 May 2011 | The Tlegraph UK.

Hindus have staged angry protests after a fashion designer exhibited swimsuits bearing the image of the goddess Lakshmi at Australian Fashion Week.

The row has come close to creating a diplomatic incident betweenAustralia and India.

Models wearing colourful swimsuits and bikinis covered in pictures of the goddess took to the catwalk in front of hundreds of people in Sydney last week.

A model parades swimwear featuring the Hindu goddess Lakshmi by Lisa Blue during the Australian Fashion Week spring/summer collections show in Sydney on May 5, 2011.

However, not everyone thought it was appropriate to use of the revered goddess’s image on a skimpy piece of clothing.

When news of the fashion show reached India, some Hindus were outraged.

Over the weekend, demonstrators in Amritsar burned the Australian flag in protest, waving photographs of the offensive swimsuit and demanding that all of the garments be recalled.

Lakshmi is the Hindu goddess of wealth, prosperity, fertility and courage. She is worshipped every day by Hindus and her image is considered to be sacred.

Rajan Zed, president of Universal Society of Hinduism, demanded an apology from the designer. He said Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world and its deities deserved to be respected.

“Lakshmi was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not for pushing swimwear in fashion shows for mercantile greed of an apparel company,” he said.

The Bharatiya Janata Partya party (BJP) also called for an apology from the Australian government.

The incident is the latest in a long line of fashion faux pas by Western designers when it comes to Indian gods, including US designer Guess using the image of Ganesh on a tank top and the French shoe brand Minelli putting images of Lord Rama on shoes.

The Australian fashion house responsible for the design was quick to apologise.

In a statement, Lisa Blue Swimwear said the company had put a halt on production of the new range and pulled the pieces that had been shown during Fashion Week.

“This range will never be available for sale in any stockists or retail outlets anywhere in the world,” it said.

“We apologise to the Hindu community and take this matter very seriously.

“At no time would we ever have intended that the brand would cause offence.”

Australia’s relationship with India is only just starting to recover after a spate of attacks on Indian students last year which led to widespread protests and claims that the crimes were racially motivated.

The repercussion started from Razan Zed a renowned Hindu Priest and Hindu Dharmik Activist in US 6th May just after completion of the Sydney Fashion Show named “Rosemount Australian Fashion Week” (2-6 May), where Godess Lakshmi was depicted in the swimsuits designed by Lisa Blue.  Read the details report here. >> Depiction of Hindu Goddess on swimwear at Sydney fashion show. 

2 comments on “Depiction of Lakshmi on swim-wear at Sydney fashion show spark angry protests in India.

  1. Deepa
    August 22, 2011

    OMG…who is the Designer…..this hurts me a lot…..learn to respect the custom of yours and other…u disrespect our god, they will never forgive u as we so……think out of the box but be in limits… if you really adore INDIA u shud first know the custom of that……You should apologize to all Indians…..if I would be something i will never permit your any collection for any fashion shows…..whoever was the organiser you all people were blind,,can’t you see it before show casing it…….I can use any abuse word but this is not in our blood, we really respect our tradition and custom then WHO THE HELL ARE U to disrespect our custom..

    Like

  2. Mahadevan
    May 17, 2017

    Beautiful girl! Wonderful swimsuit!
    Namah Shivay!

    Like

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