US Pizza chain Papa John’s has pulled a TVC that ‘trivialised’ Yoga, after the ad enraged Hindus around the world.
The ‘Yoga’ ad was for the new Papa John’s ‘Papadias’, which seems remarkably similar to a calzone.
“I bet you’ve never seen a sandwich do Yoga before,” the voiceover in the ad says, before adding “Om” – the mystical Hindu syllable.
You can see the ad below.
Hindu statesman Rajan Zed pointed out some of the cultural issues with the ad.
Namely, the fact the TVC uses Hindu culture – where cows are considered sacred – to try to sell a “beef-laced pizza”.
“Pizza delivery companies should not be in the business of mocking serious religious concepts,” Zed said.
“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.”
Papa John’s has since responded to the claims.
“In everything we do, we’re guided by our values and our purpose that we love pizza and it brings us all together,” a spokesperson said in a statement.
“We strive to demonstrate these values each day to create a people-first culture where truly everyone belongs. We are in the process of removing this commercial from rotation, which will take full effect over the next week.”