Doormat featuring the Indian national flag was being sold on Amazon Canada – removed now

International flag doormat currently unavailable on Amazon Canada

There was lots of uproar in India when it was found that doormat featuring the Indian national flag was being sold on Amazon Canada.

The Indian External Affairs Minister especially took strong exception to Amazon selling the offensive doormat design on its Canadian website. She used Twitter to lash out on Amazon and warned the online retailer of dire consequences if the offending doormat was not removed from the website listing.

The minister not only demanded that the offending doormat be removed from the Amazon Canada listing, it also asked Amazon to apologise for selling the doormat featuring the Indian national flag.

She warned that she would revoke visas for all Amazon officials in India if the insulting product was not removed from the website. She demanded that Amazon tendered an unconditional apology and withdrew all products insulting the Indian national flag immediately. The warnings from the External Affairs Minister came in the wake of this message from another Twitter user:

The online retailer was found to be selling personalized tricolour doormats. It isn’t yet clear whether Amazon Canada was directly selling the doormats or one of its sub-retailers did the mischief.

The doormats were being sold as “Indian Flag Doormats” with the description: “doormat Indian flag personalized durable machine-washable indoor/outdoor door mat welcome doormat”.

The description further said: “17.99 Oz. Designed for indoors/outdoors use. Durable heat-resistant, non-woven fabric top. Backed with a neoprene rubber non-slip backing. Sized in 23.6” (L) x 15.7” (W). Dry wet feet, grab dirt, dust and grime. Machine washable, easy to clean.”

Indian national flag doormat Amazon Canada - 1

The doormat featuring the Indian national flag has now been removed from Amazon Canada

International flag doormat currently unavailable on Amazon Canada

As you can see in the image above, the listing shows as “Currently unavailable”.

This is quite weird and it seems like an intentional mischief. Who would like to sell such a product featuring another country’s national flag?

Why would someone sell a doormat featuring the Indian national flag on Amazon Canada or elsewhere?

There might be different reasons why someone would want to sell such a mischievous product on an e-commerce website like Amazon. He or she might be totally indifferent to the prestige attached to a particular flag whether the flag belongs to India or another country.

Or maybe someone really wanted to cause trouble knowing quite well that there would be an uproar.

Whatever was the reason, Amazon really needs to spruce up its reviewing department, especially when it is expanding into different countries. People may not have trouble wearing their national flags as underwear in countries like America and Canada, but in Asian countries, people are really sensitive about their national flags.

Although the listing has been removed, it has left a bad taste. The doormat featuring the international flag shouldn’t have been allowed to feature on Amazon Canada in the first place. This was a grave oversight.

This isn’t the first time such offending products were being sold on one of the online retailer websites. A few months ago someone was selling doormats featuring Hindu gods and goddesses and then many Hindu organisations had protested back then. Although, even then the offending items were removed from the listing, it seems to be becoming  a regular trend. Indians seem to be more tolerant towards these discussions and maybe this is why businesses easily take such liberties.

About Sarah Watts
Sarah is a technology buff. Not uptight about her writing skills, but when it comes to covering technology, she is a no holds barred writer.

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