National Hindu group urges Kohl’s to remove throw pillow from shelves

Ganesh pillow also available at Walmart

A national Hindu group is asking Kohl’s chief executive officer Kevin Mansell for an apology and asking the retailer to remove a throw pillow depicting the image of Hindu deity Ganesh from the shelves.

The Reno, Nevada-based group, The Universal Society of Hinduism, said inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other uses is inappropriate and hurts devotees.

“Lord Ganesh was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not for tossing/throwing/scattering around on sofas/couches, chairs, beds, floors, etc., and sitting on it,” said Rajan Zed, a Hindu leader and president of the Universal Society of Hinduism.

Hinduism is the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 billion followers. There are about three million Hindus in the United States.

In Hinduism, Lord Ganesh is worshipped as god of wisdom and remover of obstacles and is invoked before the beginning of any major undertaking.

On Tuesday afternoon the “Ganesh Throw Pillow,” was listed as “out of stock,” on the website.

“Kohl’s has removed the product in question from our site and we have reached out to Mr. Zad directly,” Jen Johnson, Kohl’s, vice president of corporate communications said. “We sincerely apologize to the Hindu community and our customers for any unintended offense this product may have caused.”

The pillow was also available on Walmart’s website for $37.99, but is currently out of stock.

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