In a series of posts on Facebook, Abhay Deol slammed ads for fairness creams, many of which feature celebrities such as Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, John Abraham, among others.
The ‘Oye Lucky, Lucky Oye’ actor does not toe the line of an ordinary actor. While most actors choose to adopt a silent stance when it comes to social and political issues, Deol, however, in a rather brazen move has decided to highlight the hypocrisy that many Bollywood actors advocate when endorsing fairness creams while simultaneously talking about the importance ofother values like equality, justice and fair treatment.
India, is a country where fair is often equated with beautiful, where products that promise to make one “beautiful” and “irresistible”, sell in large numbers. After all, fairness is counted as a valid qualification in many matrimonials. Using a collation of advertisements starring reputed actors like Shah Rukh Khan, Sonam Kapoor and John Abraham selling fairness products to an impressionable and trusting audience, Deol has criticized the actors’ decision to indulge in such demeaning practices for money and fame.
Though not the first one to speak out against endorsement of fairness products in Bollywood, the stridency with which Abhay has raised the issue will help drive further attention to it, and may also make film stars more conscious about which brands they choose to endorse. In the past, actors like Kangana Ranaut, Nandita Das, Swara Bhaskar, Ranbir Kapoor, Randeep Hooda, and Upen Patel have refused to endorse fairness creams and products.
Deol makes an appeal to people to not buy into the flawed notion around skin colour in India, that fairness makes someone better. For most of their existence, fairness creams were only meant for women, but in the past decade or so, we have achieved equality in this field, with fairness creams for men flooding the market too, making lighter skin a truly aspirational state for all genders.
Image credits: Telfie.in