After food delivery app Zomato faced flak for distinguishing some restaurants with a ‘halal’ meat tag, very popular food chain McDonald’s in India faces backlash.
The controversy erupted after McDonald’s India said on Twitter that all its restaurants are halal certified.
“All our restaurants have HALAL certificates. You can ask the respective restaurant Managers to show you the certificate for your satisfaction and confirmation,” the fast-food company said in a reply to a user’s inquiry.
However, the reply angered many people on Twitter, who called for a boycott of the US chain, with the hashtag #BoycottMcDonalds trending in India.
The Arabic word “halal” means permissible and, in relation to food, refers to meat and meat-containing products that are prepared on the basis of Islamic law. Halal certification indicates that animals were slaughtered according to the Muslim tradition.
Many wondered why McDonald’s was serving halal meat in India where 80% of the population are Hindus.
A user wrote: “This is a blatant and intentional assault on Hindu beliefs. India is 80% Hindu, and there 4% Jain, Sikhs & Buddhists in addition to it. But, McDonald’s had betrayed all these 84% of people just to appease the 14% Muslims. “It’s time people of all Indian Religions #BoycottMcDonalds,” he added.
Vishnu Gupta national president of Hindu Sena said that McDonald’s was overlooking the feelings of Hindus. “McDonald’s can’t force halal meat upon a vast section of Hindus who eat jhatka,” he said. Gupta warned: “If MacDonald’s doesn’t change its strategy, and start serving both halal and jhatka in its outlets across India, soon our men will protest against the food chain on streets.”