Actor Nandita Das is surprised but happy about a major multinational brand deciding to drop the word ‘fairness’, ‘whitening and ‘lightening’ from its brands. On Thursday, Hindustan Unilever announced it will drop the word “fair” from its Fair & Lovely range of products in order to make its portfolio ‘more inclusive’.
Speaking to Mumbai Mirror, she mentioned that though the move was symbolic, it was still a huge step forward.
She was quoted as saying: “In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, a number of social wrongs have found a surprisingly sympathetic audience. The announcement today by Hindustan Unilever that they will remove the words ‘fairness’, ‘whitening and ‘lightening’ from their line of products, is something I don’t think anyone saw coming. Even though it is more symbolic (after all they have not discontinued the product, just changed the messaging), it is still a big step forward. Many brands spend hundreds of crores of rupees to spread the absurd message of fair being lovely in a largely dark country. So, when a market leader steps in, at the very least, it will certainly lead to an even wider debate.”
”The world is ridden with so many forms f discrimination – n the basis of religion, caste, gender, sexuality, language and, of course, skin colour. A given identity, that one is born with, has become the most defining factor. But increasingly, it is being challenged, and thankfully, cannot be ignored.”
Nandita Das has been the face of Dark Is Beautiful campaign for many years. Speaking to Hindustan Times, she had said, “Many female actors were becoming lighter and lighter with every film! Being a dark person, you are always being told about it. Initially all articles about me would start with – dark and dusky. Thankfully, my parents never put any complex in me. When I speak at colleges, young girls ask me ‘how come you are so confident despite being dark?’ because we link the colour of our skin to our self esteem and confidence. When I supported this campaign, I didn’t think I was going to become the face of it.”
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