Dear supporters of Hinduism
We would like to update you on our campaign about the play ‘Ganesh Versus the Third Reich’ which began its show from Thursday, 29 September 2011 at the Malthouse Theatre during the Melbourne Festival in Melbourne, Australia.
On 28 September 2011, a meeting was held with all the organisations involved in the play as well as the representatives of Hindu organisations. In the meeting, the Organisers of the play had committed to removal of all the offensive promotional material from their website, flyers, etc. The Organisers of the play had requested that Hindu representatives watch the play, hence a volunteer of Forum for Hindu Awakening also watched the play.
Our volunteer noticed the following denigrations –
- Lord Ganesh is shown captured by the Nazi’s and is shown a knife.
- Lord Shiva is portrayed very badly and there is a scene when he plucks a human being in to two. Lord Shiva being the principle of destruction, every action, even in destruction, there is divinity. However this is incorrectly portrayed in the play and it really hurts ones sentiments when one sees the version of the play.
- The character in the play asks for opinion of Lord Ganesh’s trunk in a jocular fashion.
- Lord Ganesh is trivialised by being shown as a mortal and being dressed in a suite.
- There is a conversation between the characters in the play, that of they had to market the play, they could say, Ganesh is like a Spiderman and say it’s a modern mythology.
- Lord Ganesh is trivialised as He is shown talking about his relationship where he ate and drunk wine.
Other Hindu representatives who also watched the play took objections to the following –
- The play opens with a scene where a shadow of lord Shiva, behind a screen, angry that the swastika "has been stolen," tears a silhouette of a person apart and is about to go and destroy the world. Lord Shiva is incorrectly depicted as a shadow with crazy hair falling over his face. A shadow of Goddess Parvati is shown cowering from him. (The implication is that women are subservient in our culture.)
- A man with board shorts, no shirt and a garland plays Lord Vishnu.
- The torture scene is still there. Lord Ganesh stands before the Nazi dr. Mengle, hands behind his back (handcuffed style) and Mengle tells him to say hello to Mr. Scalpel. Mengle tells Him who much he loves investigative surgery on dwarfs and twins and keeps asking Ganesh where he gets his elephant head.
- The actor who plays Ganesh removes the mask, becoming human again, and utters many obscenities, including suck my d**k. This reduces the sanctity we hold Lord Ganesh in.
- Innuendo: one character asks another about whether the length of Lord Ganesh's trunk is long enough? Audience laughs.
- In one scene, Lord Ganesh is compared to King Kong and in another to Spiderman by the director, who is a character in the play.
Forum for Hindu Awakening found that the play is denigrating; because the root problem is the theme of the play, which involves humanisation of Hindu deities. Hence, the play will have to be cancelled to stop further denigration of the Hindu deities, if the play is not cancelled, Hindus will have no choice but to protest at the theatre.
Forum for Hindu Awakening is awaiting further details from the coordinator regarding meeting the organisers of the play about the denigrations observed in the actual play. We will update you soon whether the play will be cancelled or when we will start the protest.
We urge all supporters of Hinduism to continue their protests to the Organisers of the play.
With Kind Regards,
Seekers of Forum for Hindu Awakening.