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Nestle faces outrage over Lord Jagannath images on Kitkat chocolate packs

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Nestle India on Thursday said it has withdrawn from the market packs of its chocolate brand Kitkat that carried sacred images of Lord Jagannath and Mata Subhadra on the wrappers.

Nestle India on Thursday said it has withdrawn from the market packs of its chocolate brand Kitkat that carried sacred images of Lord Jagannath and Mata Subhadra on the wrappers.

The Indian subsidiary of the global Swiss giant made the announcement as it sparked an outrage on social media for hurting religious sentiments. 

"We do understand the sensitivity of the matter and regret if we have inadvertently hurt anyone's sentiment. We had already withdrawn these packs from the market last year. We thank you for your understanding and support," said a Nestle spokesperson.

According to the company, these were travel packs meant to celebrate beautiful local destinations. Nestle, which owns brands such as Maggi noodles, Nescafe coffee and Milkmaid, said it wanted to celebrate the culture of Odisha with designs on packs representing 'Pattachitra'.

"Last year, we wanted to celebrate the culture of Odisha with designs on packs representing 'Pattachitra', an art form uniquely identifiable by its vivid imagery. We wanted to encourage people to know about the art and its artisans. Our past campaigns have also shown that consumers like to collect and keep such beautiful designs," it said.

Pattachitra is an ancient Odisha-based artworks of cloth-based scroll painting.