DRAGON’S Den star Duncan Bannatyne has sparked a religious backlash after wishing all Indians a “Happy Diwali”.
The Scots entrepreneur was branded “ignorant” for his comment about the Hindu and Sikh celebration when around one in seven Indians follows a different faith.
The Diwali “festival of lights” is a five day celebration, and celebrated by Hindus and Sikhs in the country.
But more than 13% of people living in India are Muslim, and Christianity, Buddhism and Jainism also exist as minority religions.
India has witnessed several religious conflicts throughout its history, with thousands of Indians losing their lives.
But 63-year-old Bannatyne ignored any existing religious tensions yesterday, posting to his 564,000 followers: “Happy Diwali to all Indians”.
The businessman and TV star was met by an immediate backlash from followers, with one, called Flex, writing: “How can Duncan Bannatyne say ‘Happy Diwali to all Indians’ how ignorant”.
One compared his faux pas with football rivalry in Glasgow.
Steller Hive, wrote: “Not all Indians celebrate Diwali. It’s like congratulating all Glaswegians when Celtic win.”
Another called Rach, blasted: “Don’t you mean to all Hindus? Some people from India aren’t Hindu!”
Twm Jones piped in: “Diwali is a celebration of religion it’s not exclusive to nor is it extended to any single given country.”
Duncan Bannatyne was quick to correct himself, thanking followers for letting him know his mistake, writing to one fan: “Thank you for pointing that out.”