Some of the descriptions used by the online retailer include “fringed carpet”, “Greek fringed carpet” and “graphic fringed carpet”.
Some of the carpets in the photos had illustrations of the Ka’bah and mosques.
Khadija Rizvi, 24, a master’s student in journalism at Manchester-based University of Salford, posted prayer rugs on her Instagram page and her message went viral. Rizvi told BuzzFeed News that she came across 7 prayer rugs that were sold as rugs.
She wrote, “I am disgusted. I am livid. @Sheinofficial also OFFERS Muslim prayer rugs (janemaz / sajadah) by selling them as “border rugs” that people can use casually in the house.
“Not only is it disrespectful, but they have once again renamed and stolen the credit of all faith this time, failing to label it as a Muslim prayer rug; which allows people to use it casually as a decorative rug. ”
Rizvi stated that she was not a regular customer, but that she had already purchased products from SHEIN. The article was bought for his attention by one of his followers on Instagram.
She said her first response when she saw the carpets was total anger.
“I was so incredibly offended and hurt that a piece of my religion, something we pray on 5 times a day, was used as a casual mat for regular use – when at home we treat it with the biggest respect, ”she said.
One of the rugs that was on sale as an “acorn trim printed with flowers” had products decorated with Ramadan Kareem in the background of the photo and the Ka’bah on the rug.
It is not known how long the rugs have been on sale, but some criticisms date back to mid-May this year.
Many people agreed with Rizvi and said that rugs sold as regular rugs were offensive.
Rizvi said she did not expect her post to go so viral.
“I shared my own outrage and it turns out that tens of thousands of people feel the same thing that led to the withdrawal of the items, we did it together,” she said. “As a journalist and activist, I believe it is my duty to use my platform and my voice to raise awareness of the corners that people sometimes overlook in society. “
Shein apologized for issuing a statement, writing, “To our community – we made a serious mistake recently by selling prayer rugs as decorative rugs on our site.
We understand that this was a very offensive mistake and we are very sorry. ”
They said that the products were immediately removed from their site and they formed a product review committee made up of staff from different cultures and religions to prevent this from happening again.