Upset Hindus have urged Leuven (Belgium) headquartered leading global brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev to change the name of its popular “Brahma” beer, calling it highly inappropriate.
Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that in Hinduism, the creator god Lord Brahma, along with Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva, forms the great triad of Hindu deities. Linking Lord Brahma with an alcoholic beverage was very disrespectful,
Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts or symbols for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees, Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, pointed out.
Rajan Zed stressed that Lord Brahma was highly revered in Hinduism, meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be used in selling beer for mercantile greed.
Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about 1.1 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.
Moreover, the sacredness attached to Lord Brahma did not go well with raunchy commercials and ads of “Brahma” beer, Rajan Zed indicated. Hollywood celebrities Megan Fox and Jennifer Lopez have acted in “Brahma” beer commercials.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, which claims heritage dating back to 1366, has over 500 beer brands sold in over 150 countries. Besides “Brahma” (Brazilian Pilsener containing Pils Malt), its other beer brands include Bud Light, Budweiser, Corona, Skol, Stella Artois, etc. “Brahma” was created by Swiss immigrant Joseph Villager in Brazil in 1888. Carlos Brito is the Chief Executive Officer of Anheuser-Busch InBev, one of the world’s top consumer product companies, whose revenue in 2016 was $46 billion.