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Home Editor's picks Hindustan Unilever deletes Hinduphobic tweet on Kumbh Mela, reposts same video with alternate text

Hindustan Unilever deletes Hinduphobic tweet on Kumbh Mela, reposts same video with alternate text

While children abandoning their parents is an unfortunate fact, to reduce the Kumbh Mela to just the place where people come to do so is far off the mark.

Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL), the Indian arm of the British-Dutch conglomerate, in its latest ad aimed at encouraging children to take care of their elderly parents has reduced the Kumbh Mela to a place where ‘old parents are abandoned’.

In a tweet, which is now deleted, HUL reduced the Kumbh Mela to a place where old parents are abandoned.

Original tweet which reduced Kumbh Mela to a place where old parents get abandoned deleted

Following the outrage on the Hinduphobic text and video, HUL, in a damage control mode, deleted the original tweet, about 20 hours after it was shared, and posted a new tweet with same video. In a new tweet, the video is shared with an alternate text removing the reference that Kumbh Mela is a place where old parents get abandoned. However, towards the end, the preachy text still remains.

The highly successful Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj concluded on March 4 on Mahashivratri which saw over 24 crore devotees taking a dip at the holy confluence. However, as seen above, the HUL ad depicts it as a place where a visibly jittery son takes his ageing father to the Kumbh and taking advantage of the crowd lets go of his father’s hand, thereby abandoning him. However, as he is walking away, he sees a father trying to make sure his young son does not get lost. This wakes up his conscience and he goes back to fetch his father who had ordered a tea for the two of them because he was sure his son would return.

While the ad strikes all emotional chords, and while it is indeed a reality that in many families children abandon their ageing parents, to reduce the holy Kumbh to only a place where old parents get abandoned is unfair. A lot of Twitter users were visibly angry with this depiction.

People even pointed out that even keeping the anti-Hindu part out of the criticism, the ad is in bad taste.

While some used sarcasm to get their point across.

And of course, the reality that those who want to abandon their parents would do so anyway, there was no reason to drag the Kumbh Mela to get the point across.

Some users even called for legal action against the company.

HUL which owns dozens of consumer brands through which it is notorious for making preachy advertisements. While HUL has deleted the original Hinduphobic tweet, the text towards the end which patronises and reduces the Kumbh to a place where old parents are abandoned still remains.

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Staff reporter at OpIndia

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