A new advertisement by Dabur, which shows a same-sex couple celebrating the Karva Chauth festival, has prompted mixed reactions on social media.
The ad shows two young women getting ready for their first Karva Chauth. One woman applies bleach on the other woman’s face, while both of them discuss the significance of the festival and why they are celebrating it. Another woman joins them and gives sarees to both of them to wear that night.
The commercial then shows both women facing each other with sieves and a decorated thali with water in front of them, which shows that they are each other’s partners.
The commercial, which was supposed to show inclusivity and progressive depiction of marriage, has ended up dividing social media. Many people have praised the advertisement for its message, while some have called for boycotting Dabur over the ad, which they claim has “hurt their religious sentiments”. Yet others have also pointed out the hype created over fair skin.
“Well done, Fem/Dabur! A nice film for a traditional, often-criticised festival by an otherwise conservative brand,” tweeted a social media user.
Well done, Fem/Dabur!
A nice film for a traditional, often-criticized festival by an otherwise conservative brand. pic.twitter.com/gHBTca6jP8
— Abhishek Baxi (@baxiabhishek) October 22, 2021
“It is great to see that inclusive ads can be made only with Hindu festivals and traditions as Hinduism doesn’t discriminate and accepts all,” another said.
“Why doesn’t Dabur or whoever come up with similar ads for Xmas or EID or any other festival? Why target Hindu festivals every time? My religion and my festivals are not a platform for social issues. Please leave them alone…” another user said, criticising the ad.
This is the third controversy surrounding Diwali commercials this week, after Fabindia and Ceat Tyres ads.
Earlier this week, clothing brand Fabindia faced the heat and was forced to withdraw its advertisement for the clothing collection ‘Jashn-e-Riwaaz’, after social media users, including some senior BJP leaders, slammed the brand and accused it of “defacing” Diwali by linking the festival to an Urdu term.
A commercial by Ceat Tyre, which starred Bollywood actor Aamir Khan, advising people not to burst crackers, also faced backlash.
BJP MP Anantkumar Hegde wrote a letter to Ceat’s MD and CEO Anant Vardhan Goenka, accusing the company of “creating an unrest among the Hindus”. Hedge also asked the company to also address the “problem blocking roads in the name of namaz and noise emitted from mosques during azan”.