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Arts/Society Birmingham Shop Advert Deemed 'offensive' To Sikhs

A television advert for a Birmingham furniture shop has been banned because it was "likely to cause serious offence" to the Sikh community.

The ad for The Sofa Factory featured a picture of Guru Nanak, the Sikh religion's founder, and a soundtrack in the style of sacred verses.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld a complaint following a broadcast on Sangat TV.

It ruled the advert must not be shown again.

Continue reading the main story
Guru Nanak: The first master

Sikhism was founded by Guru Nanak, a former accountant born to a Hindu family in the Western Punjab in 1469
As a child he showed an interest in poetry, philosophy and religion, studying Hinduism and Islam extensively
Sikhs believe Guru Nanak entered communion with God at the age of 30 after disappearing for three days in the river Bain
The experience confirmed his belief that the way to spiritual growth was in meditation and living a life that reflected the divine in each human being
This is why Sikhism stresses the importance of good actions rather than merely carrying out rituals
Source: BBC Religion

The ASA said: "We considered that the use of the central icon of the Sikh faith and the use and distortion of religious verses to advertise products made light of those important elements of the Sikh faith in a way that was likely to cause serious offence to some members of the Sikh community."

It added that the shop had acknowledged receipt of the complaint and that Sangat TV, a channel aimed at broadcasting to the Sikh community, had given assurances that it would no longer broadcast the advert.

A member of the Sikh Council UK in Birmingham, Balvinder Kaur, did not believe the intention of the advert was to cause offence.

Ms Kaur said: "They're very good Sikhs.

"I just think it wasn't thought through very carefully.

"I think because it was an attractive tune, that was what it was based on more than anything else."

I have seen this add many times and so ridiculous. It really is mind boggling.. why would you have an advert with a tune that sounds exactly like a religious song. What has religion to do with selling furniture??

Maybe they create sofas for religious people ..:singhbhangra:lol


Hmm they even had 'Satnam Satnam ji Waheguru Waheguru ji' in the beginning!

They probably consulted a psychologist and he said, just make an ad with tune which most people could relate to! That's what those people did :D

But it backfired 2 ways. One was this ban. Other thing he found out that people don't listen to religious hymns but Bollywood music. That ad didn't catch the fancy of many, if any :D

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
And the Offending TV station is also SIKH OWNED...Sangat TV....had it been non-sikh owned..the Sikh outcry would have been louder...ha ha Shoes just how much SIKHS also understand/revere gurus gurbani etc.
I bet they must feel like idiots. Now, no Sikh is going to buy their sofas :interestedmunda:

Ooops.. marketing gone really bad.