With the Thaipusam festival just a week away, manufacturers of religious items has been urged not to use Hindu deities pictures when labelling religious products.
In a statement, Penang Hindu Association (PHA) president P Murugiah said the manufacturers should immediately stop using pictures of Hindu deities to promote their products as it hurts the feelings of the Hindus when these packages were found thrown in dustbins after using the items.
Among the products cited were camphor, incense packets, red kungumam, sandal wood powder, thiruneeru (holy ashes),oil, ghee and sambrani.
He feared these items would flood the market again during the coming Thaipusam festival.
“It hurts the Hindus and being insulted whenever we come across these packages were being thrown in dustbins or found on the road sides, there were incidents where these holy images were unknowingly stepped by the people.
“It is the moral responsibility of the local manufacturers to identify and understand the sensitivity of the Hindus in the country to stop this irresponsible act of the some greedy businessmen who aimed to make money by ignoring the feelings of the people,” he said in a statement.
He has also called on the Indian High Commission to play its part in highlighting the issue for items imported from India.
“Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry could also play their role by acting against the local traders who manufacture and distribute such items and the Customs Department should ban the import of such items,” Murugiah said.
He added several countries in Asia had imposed the ban of such items and Malaysia should also follow the government of the neighbouring countries on this issue.
“Singapore does not allow the import of such items,” he told Asia Samachar.
He appealed to the Hindus to stop buying these items immediately to make the manufacturers realise that the consumers would not support this anymore.
Thaipusam, will be celebrated on Jan 21, which falls on “Pusam Natchatram” at numerous Murugan Temples in the country and around the world to worship Lord Murugan