Mumbai. The often seen “Men will be Men” advertisements on TV are causing huge uproar as the ads are projecting men in a very bad taste, some men rights group claim.
Nationwide protests have erupted demanding an immediate ban on these ads. From streets to social media, men all over the country are reacting strongly over the issue with #BanMenWillBeMen being the top trending topic on twitter. Our reporter spoke to some of these aggrieved men to get their version of the story.
Investment banker Rajat Kumar had a horrifying incident to narrate. “A few days back, whenever I tried to take lift for my office, women nearby would rush in it to deny me entry. I had to wait for hours or take stairs to my office which is on the eighteenth floor. I do not watch TV, and it was only after a friend told me that my face resembles the guy in the advertisement that I figured out what was happening.”
Showing his earlier picture Mr. Kumar added, “I have stopped using specs and have grown beard since then. Banning? I’m seriously thinking of suing the company for the trouble I underwent.”
The ‘Indian Obese Men’s Association’ too has objected specifically to the ad where two men are shown holding their breath to hide their bellies, in presence of a woman.
Ankush Kapadia, a senior member of the association said, “This ad sends a very wrong signal, more so in a country like ours where 70% of men are obese. One need not be flat stomached to get attention. Look around and you will find that majority of beautiful ladies have partners having bellies. Many obese people have gone in depression and our helpline is flooded with calls ever since this ad was released.”
Similar concerns were experienced by Piyush Singh, a bank manager from Mumbai. “My wife has become doubly suspicious over me when we go to shopping malls. I make sure that I only stare my wife to avoid fights in the malls,” said Mr Piyush referring to the shopping mall advertisement that was recently released in this series.
N. Subramaniyam, top ranker of a prestigious Pune based mass communication institute opined, “Personally, I too do not approve of such ads. However being a masscom student myself, I feel banning them is against freedom of expression. To dilute the gravity of these ads, I suggest putting a disclaimer that all characters and situations in the ad are fictitious and their similarity to real life incidents is a mere coincidence.”
The strongest of all reactions was received from Sadanand Vichare, President of ‘Purush Sammaan Raksha Samiti’.
“This is the first time that morality of men is being questioned so openly. Till now every ad from bikes, deodorants to undergarments showed women going after men. How can these ads deviate from traditional advertising which is well accepted in our society? Yeh hum bardasht nahi karenge! Aakhir purushon ke asmita or sanman ka sawal hai,” said MR Vichare.