The Oye Times in Canada and Eurasia Review report that an American Hindu group is objecting to the publication of a Doctor Who comic last year, The Twelfth Doctor #3, over its website description,
Kali, oldest and deadliest of these creatures, was thought defeated long, long ago; her body scattered throughout time to prevent her return.
There is no evidence that any member of this group has read the comic in question, however. Or even knows that it’s a Doctor Who comic.
Rajan Zed, President of Universal Society of Hinduism, in Nevada, has called for Titan Comics it withdraw the comic, both from stores and online, and offer a public apology from all those responsible.
And states that the goddess Kali was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be thrown around loosely in reimagined versions for dramatic effect in comics. And that calling her a “creature” was hurtful to her devotees.
It is reported that Rajan Zed stressed that Hindus are in favor of free speech as much as anybody else, if not more so. But this statement is followed by the word “but” which, as usual, means that this former statement is not always true, and then says that faith is something sacred, and any attempts at belittling faith hurts the devotees.
Doctor Who fan site Kasterborous reviewed the subsequent issue #4, saying,
The Kaliratha are like the demon Raktabija, an innumerable threat that seems to increase in size whenever one of its horde falls. Unlike Raktibija, however, the Kaliratha are the servants of Kali, Goddess of time and death. One would be hard pressed to find a more apt villain for a Doctor Who story taking place in India.
It may be worth reminding readers that free speech, if it is worth anything, includes that which you object to or are offended by in others in order to preserve your own.
However Titan Comics did want to issue this response. They told Bleeding Cool,
Titan comics apologise for any offence caused by the representation of Kali in this comic. This particular character is an alien that uses the iconography of Kali to infiltrate India in the 1800s. The story eventually reveals that this entity is not the goddess of the Hindu faith. Titan‘s Doctor Who comics draw inspiration from historical events and cultural traditions from all over the globe.
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