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Victory Against Religious Mockery

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ISKCON has won a legal case against House of Fraser that could set a precedent against any type of future religious mockery in Britain.


The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) has been awarded 17,500 in compensation plus legal costs together with a public apology from the House of Fraser for an advert suggesting they were a dangerous and loony religious sect.


The House of Fraser ran the ad in April 2001's 'The Face' and displayed the same ad in about 20 of House of Fraser's stores in the UK. The ad featured Hare Krishna Hindu devotees with the strapline: "Linea Directions wear it and pity those who can't, exclusive to House of Fraser. If I wasn't a chanting, cymbal banging easily led nutcase who'd been brain washed by some loony religious sect I could be wearing Linea Directions extra fine marino sweater and linen jeans."


The initial complaint was sparked when Boy George made a public protest against the advertising campaign and many Hindus protested vigorously. The Advertising Standards Authority later upheld the numerous complaints received.


Shivarama Swami, the head of the Hare Krishna movement (UK) said: 'This is not just a victory for the Hare Krishna movement, or even just a victory for Hinduism; this is a victory for the rights of religious worship and expression. This will set a standard for the future and be a warning to other companies not to use someone's religious faith as a nasty and spiteful advertising campaign.'


The offensive advertisement incensed the British Hindu community who in turn complained strongly. 'This decision is a great victory for the British Hindu community who have always been slated by the media,' commented Mr. Om Prakash Sharma MBE, the president of the National Council of Hindu Temples (UK).


Individuals in the offensive advertisement are also eligible for compensation as one of the individuals has been awarded 7,500. 'This is the first time the British Hindu community have a won a legal case against ridicule', said Jitesh Thakrar, the solicitor who handled the case.


The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) or the Hare Krishna movement is part of the ancient Vaishnava tradition, a monotheistic faith within Hinduism. ISKCON was founded by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, who first brought the Krishna tradition from India to the west in 1965.



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This should serve as a precedence again for all those who discriminate against one's belief or pratice. (see Devotees prosecuted in Poland). Normally individuals or organizations do these but a business firm, this company needs to be boycotted.

Personally I beleive in religious progation and giving room for such, like the buddhist in Ladakh which are caught between the violence and hatred. Free Ladakh now if not make it a separate region from Jammu & Kashmir.


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