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BLOG - ER Ramachandran

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Kind of ads that come to our living rooms.

Quiet a few of you would have seen this ad of Akshay Kumar doing great stunts jumping from a building and landing pefectly on his feet and flicking a Thums bottle from a speeding truck. When the lady asks' Akhri thums up?' he asks 'Woh kys hota hai'? This ad comes during cricket matches when they get maximum viewership ,particularly schoolgoing kids and adolescents.I thought this ad was not in good taste on two counts. 1.Kids and others too may try flicking a cold -drink botle from a speeding delivery truck as an act of bravado. This is dangerous, even for Akshay Kumar! 2. It teaches viewers 'it's ok , if you flick ( steal) and not pay for it. Surely Akshay Kumar himself would not like his chidren or his fans to grow up like that.Why are then such ads been plugged by our stars which are on the air day in and day out?

I took up the matter with Advertising Standards Coucil of India (asci).I was asked to write a complaint and email to their ID as well as send a hard copy (thankfully not in triplicate!) by snail mail. Finally after followup for about 6 months, asci has written to me that they discused with the agency as well as the product Group and it was brought to their attention that the ad was offensive and should be taken off the air or modified.The promoters have agred for the same, it seems.That's what the letter says.
I am not sure , though. I will wait and watch.

There is one more ad which is doing the rounds these days .Bajaj pulsar 200 motorbike which is being shown in the present India- Australia one- day series. What kind of ads are being shown when young boys are mown over by State transport buses and petrol tankers on our highways and potholed dirttracks whch are an apology to the word 'road'?

The pulsar ad shows there is a traffic jam in a narrow road. No problem! Our 'Hero' first takes it on a footpath and,because he is riding the pulsar, rides over a lorry and finally flies off from the parapet of a building and lands perfectly on the road sitting on the Pulsar, no doubt!

We are not talking about a fantasy movie here, but a real motorbike being sold in the market and the ad looks like a test drive! When the Traffic and Police are worried sick how to get the accident rate down, out comes this ad.

Is this ad ok? What do you think? Should this be brought to the notice of asci?


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