Bollywood celebrities including Priyanka Chopra, Richa Chadha and Farhan Akhtar were among those who criticized the advertisement for Layer’r Shot, a men’s perfume brand, calling it “shameful”, “disgusting” and “incredibly tasteless”.
Its controversial ad shows four men chasing a frightened woman in a store and then moving on to one of the men saying, “There are four of us, is there one who shoots?”
It is only when the woman turns around that it becomes clear that it is a body spray that one of the men takes from the store shelf and uses.
The ad created a social media storm, where critics, including various celebrities, criticized its allusions to rape.
“This ad clearly promotes sexual violence against women and girls and promotes a male abuser mentality. These advertisements are causing discontent and should not be allowed to be shown in the media,” wrote Swati Maliwal, Chairperson of the Delhi Women’s Commission. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on Saturday.
Within 24 hours, the ministry took the commercial off the air and asked Twitter and YouTube to remove it from their platforms.
In an email to Twitter, the ministry said the videos “harm the portrayal of women in the interest of decency and morality” and violate the digital media code of ethics.
In a statement Monday, Layer’r Shot apologized for the TV commercial, saying it “never intended to hurt anyone’s feelings or feelings, offend any woman’s modesty, or promote any culture, as misunderstood by some.” “.
The brand said it has voluntarily asked all of its media partners to stop broadcasting ad options from Saturday immediately.
Even after the commercial was filmed, it continued to generate controversy.
Actress Richa Chadha was among those who expressed disgust, calling the creators of the ad “filth”.
“The creatives, the script, the agency, the client, the casting… does everyone think rape is a joke?” Chadha tweeted.
“What incredibly tasteless and perverted minds it takes to come up with, approve and create these smelly body sprays with insinuations about “gang rape”. Shame,” tweeted Akhtar, who is also a UN Goodwill Ambassador for Women.
Actress Swara Bhasker said the perfume brand and its marketing agency were “deaf to the tone” due to the alleged gang rape of a teenager in an upscale area of Hyderabad last Saturday.
This case shocked the state of Telangana, whose capital is Hyderabad. Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mahmoud Ali said on Saturday that “strong action will be taken against all offenders, regardless of their origin.”
In an earlier version of this story, the surname of UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Farhan Akhtar was incorrect.