An advertisement featuring ‘Dil Bechara’ actress Sanjana Sanghi was slammed for allegedly promoting violence against men and its sexist undertones.
An army of social media users and celebrities including Pooja Bedi came down heavily on the newly-released promo for Lionsgate Play, a streaming app.
In the advertisement released on December 2, Sanghi is shown lounging with her partner in bed as they discuss what show or film to stream online.
They are confused while browsing and Sanghi comes up with a bizarre game to help them decide. She slaps her unsuspecting boyfriend eight times, before he yells ‘stop’ and that signal makes her decide to watch the eighth film on the list. She is doing it playfully, but the slaps land loud.
Model and actress Pooja Bedi wasn’t impressed.
“Absolutely HORRIFIED 2 watch this advt. Domestic violence against men is NOT acceptable. What if a man was slapping a woman in this advt? This should NEVER CLEAR an advertising board! #men have rights,” said Bedi.
She wasn’t alone in criticising the advertisement. Social media has been flooded with censure against the advertisement for the app. Many wondered if the promo would have been greenlit if the situation was reversed and the boyfriend had to launch a volley of slaps against his girlfriend.
“Imagine the guy slapping the girl to decide which TV show to watch. Violence against men also is an offence!! @ascionline please take notice of this advertisement,” wrote a Twitter user.
Many also dubbed it as ‘disgusting’, ‘shameful’ and ‘unpalatable’.
“Disgusting AD which promotes domestic violence against men. Please repeal this ad from all media and publish an unconditional apology to the audience,” wrote another Twitter user.
Several calls for withdrawal of the video commercial has also been made, with many dubbing it as a deplorable way to promote a product.
“Imagine the guy slapping the girl to decide which TV show to watch. Violence against men also is an offence!! @ascionline please take notice of this advertisement,” wrote a Twitter user, tagging The Advertising Standard Council Of India demanding action to be taken.
Lionsgate Play is a streaming service from Lionsgate India and Starz and will stream Hollywood content in multiple Indian languages.
The Advertising Standards Council of India Twitter account have already taken note of the dissent and responded to an irate user with: “Thank you for tagging us, we are already processing the complaint against this advertisement,”
Sanjana made her film debut this year with ‘Dil Bechara’, Sushant Singh Rajput’s posthumous release.