Amazon Canada Removes Bikini With K’taka Flag After Uproar

Reportedly, the bikini was available on Amazon in the United Kingdom, Japan, and Mexico.

2 min read

Two days after a Google search result drew flak from Kannadigas, a bikini selling on Amazon’s website in Canada has come under fire from people of the state. The bikini, which resembled the Karnataka flag featuring the state emblem and its red and yellow colours, was pulled off sale from the website on Sunday, 6 June, following the backlash.

Reportedly, the bikini was available on Amazon in the United Kingdom, Japan, and Mexico.

As soon as the issue was brought to light by pro-Kannada organisations, Kannada and culture minister Arvind Limbavali said legal action would be initiated against Amazon Canada.


“The Kannada language, culture and heritage have a history of thousands of years. We strongly condemn any act to hurt the Kannada identity by foreign companies that are ignorant of Kannada’s nobility,” the minister said, reported The Indian Express.

"We experienced an insult of Kannada by @Google recently. Even before the scars could heal, we find @amazonca using the colours of #Kannada flag and the Kannada icon on ladies’ clothes," Arvind Limbavali tweeted, saying that multinational companies should be careful to not hurt the pride of the Kannadigas.

"Multinational companies should stop such repeated insult of #Kannada. This is a matter of Kannadigas' self-pride and we will not tolerate the rise in such incidents. @amazonca should, therefore, apologise to Kannadigas. Legal action will be taken immediately against @amazonca," the minister tweeted.

Amazon is yet to formally react to the incident.

Meanwhile, the opposition Congress urged the state government to initiate a probe. “Who wants to hurt Kannada pride and why? Who has a problem with our resilient people, our great culture and traditions? Hope the Karnataka government will investigate,” state Congress chief DK Shivakumar said.

Karnataka has its own flag – red, white and yellow – with the emblem of the state Gandaberunda, a two-headed mythological bird, in the centre. While the flag has its own share of political controversies, it has now kicked up a row after the design was found on a bikini on Amazon's Canada site.

As shared by several social media users, the name of the product ( BKDMHHH Women's flag of Karnataka original design slim fit tie-side laces triangle chic trimmer) also mentions 'Karnataka flag', though the white portion of the flag is missing.

Recently, a Google search on the “ugliest language in India” threw Kannada as the answer. The search engine apologised and removed the search result a few hours after the Karnataka government decided to issue a legal notice.

“Resilient Kannada people will not take such horrendous acts lying down. The recent attempts to humiliate Kannadigas using Amazon and Google raises an important question,” Shivakumar said.

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