The Hindutva group argued that as Durga puja falls during the same time as Navratri — a nine-day festival where people fast and abstain from having vegetarian food — the advertisement is an insult to their region
New Delhi: Fortune Foods is in a spot of bother for an advertisement on the Durga puja. The company is facing backlash from many in the Hindutva group after they came up with an advertisement showing a Bengali woman, depicted as goddess Durga, cooking several vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes for her husband.
The Hindutva group argued that as Durga puja falls during the same time as Navratri — a nine-day festival where people fast and abstain from having vegetarian food — the advertisement is an insult to their region.
#BoycottFortuneFoods— HinduJagrutiOrg (@HinduJagrutiOrg) October 10, 2018
👉#Navaratri के अवसर पर @FortuneFoods ने विज्ञापन के माध्यम से किया मां दुर्गादेवी का घोर अपमान !
👉धर्माभिमानी हिन्दू यहाँ अपना विरोध प्रविष्ट कर रहे है
Email email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
👉Toll Free 1800 233 9999https://t.co/QP78PaXl0q pic.twitter.com/2kP7TB3uTu
Fortune Foods, issuing an apology wrote, “It has come to our notice that the Pet Pujo video has hurt the sensibilities of many communities, as it depicts consumption of non-vegetarian food during Navratri. This was not intentional and we will withdraw the video from circulation other than in Bengal where it is a common practice to eat both vegetarian and non-vegetarian food. We wish to respect all communities and apologise unconditionally if we have hurt anyone unknowingly.”
However, this angered the Bengali community as they argued that if the advertisement was meant for them, issuing an apology for showing non-vegetarian food (which is very common during Durga Puja) in an advertisement is an insult to them.
If you are Bengali & have any self-respect left in you, you must join the movement to #boycottfortunefoods #বয়কটফরচুন. Fortune Food company agrees that non-veg food is offensive during #DurgaPujo. Such regressive culture is offensive to any cultured Bengali, Hindu or Muslim.— Garga Chatterjee (@GargaC) October 13, 2018
Here are few other religious advertisements that created controversy:
Jawed Habib's spa
Another controversy related to the Durga puja happened when the hairstylist Jawed Habib came out with a campaign depicting the goddess and her children pampering themselves at the spa. Following backlash for 'hurting religious sentiments', the hairstylist issued an apology.
Several eyebrows were raised when the condom-manufacturing brand came out with an advertisement in Gujarat depicting Sunny Leone holding dandiya sticks, with the caption reading: “Aa Navratriye ramo, paraantu prem thi” (Play, but with love, this Navratri).
Several people said the advertisement was derogatory and showed the festival in bad light, following which the company had to withdraw nearly 500 hoardings.
Meat and Livestock Australia
Not only India, some Western countries have also used Hindu gods and goddesses in advertisements, which did not go down well with the Hindus.
Meat and Livestock Australia, an industry body came out with an advertisement depicting Hindu god Ganesha joining gods/religious figures like Jesus, Moses, Zeus, Prophet Mohammad, Aphrodite and others over a meal of lamb meat.
In Spain, the famous burger chain brought out an advertisement showing the Hindu goddess Lakshmi sitting on a burger, with the caption reading, “A snack that is sacred”. This didn’t go down well with the Hindus and Burger King immediately pulled down the advertisement.
Domestic abuse campaign
An NGO, Save The Children, and a Mumbai-based ad agency Taproot, came out with a hard-hitting campaign aimed at raising awareness on domestic abuse. It showed three goddesses Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati with bruised faces. The poster had a caption that read: “Tomorrow it seems like no woman shall be spared. Not even the ones we pray, to”. Though the campaign received flak from orthodox Hindus, there were several people who appreciated it. Save The Children and Taproot also earned awards for the campaign.
Last Updated 11:56 PM IST