Lord Krishna in Shin Megami Tensei IV: Final Gets Negative Reception from Hindu Statesman
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
Rajan Zed, the president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, is none too pleased about the depiction of the Hindu deity Krishna in Sega's Shin Megami Tensei IV: Final role-playing video game. The Nintendo 3DS role-playing game is slated for release in Japan next week. It features the god wearing a feathered fedora, tailed coat, shorts, and boots with a golden flute.
Zed pointed out that allowing players to manipulate the god within the game is contrary to the teachings of Hinduism, where devotees "put the destinies of themselves in the hands of their deities" and allowing the god to be reduced to a character to be manipulated was "denigration." The character design is also at odds with traditional depictions where Krishna is shown with blue skin and wearing dhoti. The statement from Zed also noted that the character's fedora has an association with gangsters.
Zed stated that Sega Sammy Holdings Inc. needed to follow its own "Group Management Philosophy", which includes the phrase to "strive to enrich our society and culture." He said this case creates confusion by spreading misinformation about the Hindu deity and that reimagining Hindu religious symbols and stories for commercial purposes is hurtful to the religion's followers. He asked for more sensitivity and welcomed the entertainment business to contact Hindu scholars if they wanted information to depict the religion in a serious and respectful manner.
Rajan Zed has previously released statements regarding the character "Apocalypse" in the X-Men: Apocalypse film and Smite at Penny Arcade Expo and QuakeCon for its depiction of the goddess Kali.