The recent Freedom Convoy created one more controversy along with many others. This time it is related to the sentiments of millions of Hindus living across Canada. Many times, in the Canadian parliament people were urged not to display symbols of hatred during the protests including Nazi symbol which was being referred as “Nazi Swastika”.
Chandra Arya, an Indian origin member of the Canadian Parliament recently gave a speech in the Canadian parliament calling upon the members of the house and all Canadians to distinguish between the Hindu religious sacred symbol Swastika and the Nazi symbol Hakenkreuz. He shared a video of the speech on Twitter.
He said, “On behalf of over one million Canadians of several religious faiths and in particular Hindu-Canadians and as a Hindu-Canadian myself, I call upon members of this house and all Canadians to distinguish between the Hindu religious sacred symbol Swastika and the Nazi symbol of hatred called Hakenkreuz in German or the hooked cross in English.”
Explaining the difference between sacred Swastika and the German hooked cross he said, “In the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit, Swastika means that which brings good luck and well-being.” He reiterated that Swastika should not be equated with the German symbol of hatred Hakenkreuz.
The confusion between Hitler’s Hakenkreuz and holy Swastika has been a matter of concern for the Lower Mainland’s community too. Dr Ajay Garg, president of Bhartiya Kala Evam Sahitya Parishad (BKSP) based in Vancouver, further explained the history of Swastika. “Swastika originated in India even before Lord Rama was born. Swastika was and in current time too is used as the symbol of prosperity and considered auspicious in all Hindu ceremonies. The West became aware of this symbol much later. Even very popular German scholar Max Muller strongly opposed to Swastika being loosely applied generally to a variety of similar symbols as it was a word of Indian origin with a definite and scared meaning in India.”
He reiterated and requested Canadians not to conflate peaceful sacred Swastika with Nazi symbol of hate.
Arya in his speech too appealed, “Please stop calling the Nazi symbol of hatred as Swastika. We support the ban of the Nazi symbol of hatred Hakenkreuz or the hooked cross. Calling it Swastika is to deny us Hindu-Canadians our religious right and freedom to use our sacred symbol Swastika in our daily life.”