Mahatma Gandhi's photo on beer bottles; Israeli Brewery company apologies
New Delhi, July 06: An Israeli brewery company has apologized to India for 'hurting' sentiments for putting up Mahatma Gandhi's photo on the liquor or beer bottles to commemorate Israel's 71st Independence Day.
The set featured the five historical figures on various types of beer, including a cartoon image of Gandhi decked out in shades and a tie-dye shirt.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, Gilad Dror, Brand Manager of the company, apologised saying that he regrets using Mahatma Gandhi's image on the liquor bottles.
"Malka Beer offers its heartfelt apologies to the people and the Government of India for hurting their sentiments. We highly respect and value Mahatma Gandhi and regret our action of putting his image on our bottles," Gilad Dror said in the statement.
Dror also added that the production and supplies of the bottles were stopped soon after the Indian Embassy in Israel raised the concern. The company is "making efforts to withdraw the product from the market", Dror said, adding that the "intention" behind using Mahatma Gandhi's picture "had in fact been to honour" him.
Venkaiah Naidu had directed External Affairs minister, S Jaishankar to look into the matter and take immediate and appropriate action after it was being raised in Rajya Sabha by its members on Tuesday expressing concern over the picture of the 'Father of the Nation' on liquor bottles of the Israeli company.
However, this is not the first time for Gandhi's image to be used for an inappropriate product for sale. Back in 2017, e-commerce giant
Mahatma Gandhi was the only non-Israeli face on the limited edition bottles. Three former prime ministers of Israel - David Ben-Gurion, Golda Meir and Menachem Begin - apart from Theodor Herzl, father of Zionism, were the other celebrated personalities who were featured on the bottles.