A global fashion brand known for its sparkly handbags issued an apology and ceased the production of a Ganesha clutch bag with leather lining after protests by Indian diaspora groups in the UK.
Judith Leiber said its goal is to create unique handbags that celebrate different cultures and that it would replace the lining with synthetic after concerns were raised about the use of leather alongside the image of a Hindu deity, given the sanctity of the cow for Hindus.
“We are deeply sorry to hear that our Ganesh bag has caused offence to the Hindu community,” said Lela Katsune, President of Judith Leiber Couture.
“Judith Leiber’s goal has always been to create unique pieces that respectfully celebrate art, individuals and cultures. However, now that we are aware that the leather lining in the Ganesh bag contradicts the Hindu belief system, effective immediately we will be ceasing
production on this style with leather lining. Going forward, this style will be produced with a synthetic lining,” Katsune said.