Pokémon GO to make headlines in the news. This time around, however, it’s for the wrong reasons.
A petition has surfaced and made its way to the high court in Gujarat, a western state in India, forming allegations towards the makers of Pokémon GO that their game is insensitive and offensive towards the religious culture of millions of vegetarians by placing images of eggs in places of worship. The petition calls the act “blasphemous” towards Hindus and Jains, and also cites that the game is an infringement of privacy as well as a potential threat towards the lives of players while they search for Pokémon.
Alay Dave, the man behind the petition, which currently seeking to ban the popular app from the country, said that the depiction of eggs in places of worship is “offensive and offends the sentiments of those who don’t consume a non-vegetarian diet.” In response, the Gujarat High Court has asked Niantic Inc., the makers behind Pokémon GO, to respond to these charges. No official statement has been made yet from the company.
Reports have gone on record declaring that many temples appear as PokéStops in the country. When one reaches a PokéStop, multiple items can be found for the user’s expense including Pokémon Eggs, which are used to hatch new Pokémon for the player after allotting a certain number of steps made. Currently, Pokémon GO has not been officially released within the country. However, players have been able to work around the country restrictions by using an iTunes account associated with any country where the game has already been released.
In the Hindu religion, the holy text doesn’t explicitly prohibit the consumption of meat, but it strongly recommends the concept of non-violence against all life forms. While there are mixed preconceived notions, eggs have often been considered a living thing, and thus are avoided in meals.
The recent news has sparked ridicule among social media members, including former minister Shashi Tharoor who tweeted:
To file in the "Only in India" category! WouId be funny if such frivolous cases didn't clog our judicial system: https://t.co/l3ZD9lLdRL
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) September 7, 2016
What do you think? Does the petition have merit? Or do you believe this is an uproar over nothing? Let us know in the comments below!
Edited by bobandbill.