By SANAH AKHTAR
The animated children’s programme Fireman Sam, was found showing a character slipping on blank pages as he brought in tea
which then flew up with a sheet of paper showing verses of the Quran. Eagle eyed viewers noticed this and many claimed the episode to be Islamaphobic. This has caused controversy with the Muslim community who expressed their anger through social media.
“Islamaphobia in @FiremanSamUK? Why are there Quran pages on the floor and flying over the place?!”
Assistant Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, Miqdaad Versi posted on twitter the picture of the page and said that the page that was actually shown flying in the episode is verses 13 to 26 from Surah Mulk which is Chapter 67 of the Quran. And he also tweeted:
“Have no idea what went through the producers’ minds when they thought this was a good idea #Baffled”
Film actor and producer Sajid Varda also shared his views:
“Is Fireman Sam a Muslim or a Muslim Hater?”
However, others across social media think Muslims are over reacting and think that it isn’t such a big deal. This has resulted with a response in Islamaphobic tweets:
Tommy Robinson founder of the European Defence League has written:
“Muslims seem more offended by Fireman Sam than their co-religionists beheading a priest. Let that sink in.”
One person has tweeted:
“When the next Islamic terror attack happens today, it’s important we don’t let it distract from the more important #FiremanSam scandal.”
This isn’t the first time those connected to the programme have been in trouble. David Jones the Fireman Sam creator has once before been held accused of being ‘anti Muslim’ in an incident at Gatwick airport, where he was told to remove his scarf at security whilst a women in a veil walked through security easily. To this he then remarked:
“I wonder what would happen if I covered my face with my scarf.”
Which caused offence and he then had to apologise.
The makers of Fireman Sam have since apologised thoroughly for their mistake. The episode has now been removed from Channel 5s online streaming service. Although the episode was actually first aired by Channel 5 in October 2014, the error had only been realised very recently.
HIT Entertainment have posted a statement on their website on Tuesday which says:
“It has been brought to our attention that in an episode of Fireman Sam (series 9 Episode 7), an image of the Quran is briefly depicted. The page was intended to show illegible text and we deeply regret this error. We sincerely apologise for any distress or offence it may have caused.”
“We will no longer be working with the animation studio responsible for this mistake. In addition, we are taking immediate action to remove this episode from circulation and we are reviewing our content production procedures to ensure this never happens again” the company added “Again we apologise unreservedly to our viewers”
What are your views, is it Islamaphobic, disprespectful and has it affected you? Drop us a line on Facebook or Twitter.