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Universal Society of Hinduism wants Sony to pull Hanuman: Boy Warrior

Saturday, 18th April 2009 15:35 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

hanuman

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed wants Sony to pull the recently released Hanuman: Boy Warrior from shelves as he claims it “trivializes the highly revered deity of Hinduism.”

In a statement issued from his headquarters at the Universal Society of Hinduism in Nevada, Zed wants videogame-makers to be more sensitive when handling faith-based subjects, as it can leave a lasting impression on children, he said.

“Controlling and manipulating Lord Hanuman with a joystick/button/keyboard/mouse was denigration,” he said.

“Lord Hanuman was not meant to be reduced to just a ‘character’ in a videogame to solidify company/products base in the growing economy of India.”

According to GamingIndians.com, Zed has a history of entertainment protest and in the past has “taken up noble causes such as protests against singer Rihanna’s misspelled Sanskrit tattoo, Mike Myers flick Love Guru, and supermodel Heidi Klum’s Goddess Kali Halloween costume.”

The site also says that the gaming community is not upset over the context of the game, and the only reason it should be banned is because it’s terrible.

Ouch.

Full thing below.

Full press release

Hindus have urged Sony Corporation to withdraw the newly released “Hanuman: Boy Warrior” video game for PlayStation2, saying it trivializes the highly revered deity of Hinduism.

Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that in a video game set-up, the player would control the destiny of Lord Hanuman while in reality the believers put the destinies of themselves in the hands of their deities..

Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, argued that reimagining Hindu scriptures and deities for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.. Controlling and manipulating Lord Hanuman with a joystick/ button/keyboard/mouse was denigration. Lord Hanuman was not meant to be reduced to just a “character” in a video game to solidify company/products base in the growing economy of India.

Rajan Zed further said that as a PlayStation2 video game, Lord Hanuman would be in the company of America’s 10 Most Wanted, Bad Boys, Barbie, Britney’s Dance Beat, First Kiss Stories, Guitar Freaks, Jackass, Killer7, Looney Tunes, Mafia, Mercenaries, Midnight Club, Mister Mosquito, Nicktoons, Psychonauts, Scooby Doo, Truckers, etc.

Zed explained that Lord Hanuman was greatly revered and his worship was very popular among Hindus and there were numerous temples dedicated to him. Son of wind-god, besides incredible strength and changing shape at will and flying, he was believed to be a perfect grammarian, great scholar and excelled in all the sciences. According to a legend, even while he was still an infant, he intimidated the sun. In Mahabharata war, flag on Arjuna’s chariot driven by Lord Krishna displayed Lord Hanuman. According to a belief, all the planets were under his control.

Rajan Zed pointed out that as Sony was said to be a socially responsible and ethical corporation, it would effectively understand the feelings of Hindu community on this issue. According to PlayStation Network website: “This game is a “growing up” story of Hanuman, where he starts as a powerless being and regains his powers through the game.”

Zed suggested that India and all other countries of the world should come up with national content rating organizations for video games as these seriously affected the outlook and thought process of our next generation. Till India came up with such organization, Central Board of Film Certification should be given the authority of rating and deciding whether the particular video game was suitable for public distribution in India.

Rajan Zed stressed that Hindus were for free speech as much as anybody else if not more. Hindu tradition encouraged peaceful debates, won on their intellectual merit. But faith was something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees. Video game makers should be more sensitive while handling faith related subjects, as these games left lasting impact on the minds of highly impressionable children, teens and other young people.

Hindus welcomed entertainment industry to immerse in Hinduism but taking it seriously and respectfully and not for refashioning Hinduism concepts and symbols for mercantile greed. Hindus would gladly provide genuine entertainment industry seekers the resources they needed for their study and research regarding Hinduism, Zed stated.

Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken lightly. No faith, larger or smaller, should be plundered, Rajan Zed said.

Sony, founded in 1946, one of the most comprehensive entertainment companies in the world with consolidated annual sales of about $89 billion, is headquartered in Tokyo (Japan). Howard Stringer is the Chairman.

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11 Comments

  1. DaMan

    not bad..

    don’t officially release it in India then. or does he want it to be banned everywhere?

    #1 6 years ago
  2. ashers2ashers

    “don’t officially release it in India then”

    So Hindu’s only live in India and don’t have access to the outside world?

    #2 6 years ago
  3. Redh3lix

    Religion. Do one.

    #3 6 years ago
  4. DaMan

    ” So Hindu’s only live in India and don’t have access to the outside world? ”
    what? is that a question? they have no right to ban this stuff outside of their country(or countries).

    #4 6 years ago
  5. masseffector

    they can try and ban it but it just highlights their own issues.

    Theres worse shit to ban first, seriously.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. HundredProofSam

    Firstly, the person issuing this press release is not Indian, he’s American. Secondly, Hanuman: Boy Warrior is a game developed in India and released only in India (for now). So there’s no question of the game being banned outside India coz its only released in India. There’s been lots of TV ads and a lot of other promotion for the game and if no one in India took offence to it, I don’t see why an outsider should.

    #6 6 years ago
  7. Gekidami

    Wonder if anyones offended by Valkyrie Profile…

    #7 6 years ago
  8. Syrok

    There are not all that many people believing in Odin and friends, Geki. ;)

    #8 6 years ago
  9. Gekidami

    I’m sure some people out there still do Norse paganism :D .
    But seriously, who cares? Look at the guys track record (“taken up noble causes such as protests against singer Rihanna’s misspelled Sanskrit tattoo, Mike Myers flick Love Guru, and supermodel Heidi Klum’s Goddess Kali Halloween costume.”), he’s clearly a biggot no one should pay attention to…

    #9 6 years ago
  10. Tonka

    Little Big Planet got pulled. Can’t see why Sony wouldn’t do it again.

    #10 6 years ago
  11. DaMan

    that was because they wanted everyone to like LBP, even those anal pricks.

    Sony are pussies.

    #11 6 years ago

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