Upset Hindus are urging La Bouëxière (Brittany, France) based Distillerie Awen Nature to apologize and withdraw its Gin Ganesh, named after Hindu deity; calling it highly inappropriate. Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that inappropriate usage of sacred Hindu symbols or deities or concepts or icons for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.
Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, indicated that Lord Ganesh was highly revered in Hinduism and he was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be used for pushing gin or to adorn gin bottles. Moreover, linking a deity with an alcoholic beverage was very disrespectful, Zed added. Distilleries should not be in the business of religious appropriation, sacrilege, and ridiculing entire communities. It was deeply trivializing of divine Hindu deity to be displayed on a gin bottle, Rajan Zed emphasized.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.2 billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken frivolously. Symbols of any faith, larger or smaller, should not be mishandled, Zed noted. In Hinduism, Lord Ganesh is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking. Gin Ganesh (70CL, 44.8%); stated to be aged in French oak barrels and matured in armagnac barrels; contains juniper berries, ginger, turmeric, cardamom, cloves, etc.; and was priced at € 42. Awards-winning Distillerie Awen Nature claims that its spirits are made from distilled organic alcohol and flavored with plants; and its products are certified organic. It sells absinthes, cognacs, gins, rums, vodkas, etc.; in various bars, organic stores and restaurants in Châteaubriant, Chateaugiron, Paris, Rennes, Soulvache, etc.