Tanishq advertisement that was withdrawn recently, after huge online outrage showed a pregnant Hindu daughter-in-law being led by her Muslim mother-in-law, to a surprise godbharai ceremony (baby shower). The delighted but confused young woman turned to her mother-in-law and said, “but that’s not your tradition.” The mother-in-law lovingly replied that keeping daughters happy was a tradition in every home.
Isn’t that such a positive message? So why were so many people upset? After all, this advertisement portrayed a fantasy, as most advertisements do. The story was not real. It was a vision of a wistful, blemish free world. I believe that the outrage was the cumulative effect of multiple factors, many of which are interlinked.
The first problem was timing. Even a rookie in advertising knows that timing is everything. A brand needs to speak to the target audience when they are receptive. This advertisement came at a time when people are still grappling with the tragedy of 20-year-old Rahul Rajput. The young man fell in love with a Muslim girl in Delhi, and was beaten to death by her family.
Similarly, in Karnataka, 24-year-old Laxmipathy was recently lured and strangled by a girl’s father, for the same reason. The details of their brutal murders are still fresh in public memory. At such an emotionally fraught time, trying to sell a rosy story of inter-faith love was perhaps a miscalculation.
Source: Swarajmag Youtube Channel