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Fortune apologises after publishing front cover depicting Amazon president Jeff Bezos as Lord Vishnu

Business bible Fortune has found itself on the receiving end of a wave of criticism after it chose to depict Amazon president Jeff Bezos as Hindu deity Lord Vishnu on its front cover.

Amazone, Fortune, Lord Vishnu

This prompted Universal Society of Hinduism president Rajan Zed to warn that the issue risked trivialising a figure of worship, forcing an apology from the editor over the magazine’s choice of image in its New Year’s Day international edition.

Illustrating a piece entitled ‘Amazon invades India’ the magazine investigated how the online retailer was seeking to claim a share of the next ‘trillion dollar market’.

In a statement Alan Murray said: “The cover of Fortune’s January 2016 international edition featured an illustration of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos as a Hindu deity. Neither the artist nor the editors of Fortune had any intention of parodying a particular deity or of offending members of the Hindu faith. It is clear that we erred and for that, we apologize.”

In future Zed asked for media firms to be more mindful of religious sensitivities when reproducing revered iconography.

The visualisation was produced by Sydney based illustrator Nigel Buchanan.