Monday July 23, 2018
Home India India’s...

India’s Fairness Battle: Does this show deep-rooted Racism in the Country?

The color biased mentality is so strong in India that fair n lovely/handsome ads to people not getting jobs because of their complexion seems to be way too normal

Actress Nandita Das. Wikimedia

October 13, 2016: Greek philosopher Plato believed that ‘beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder’. Well, it seems more of a phrase now, as the world has created a check-list for determining the degree of beauty!

Anyone who doesn’t follow or fit in the criteria, people indulge in name-calling them, and in Indian society, the carnival of racism and sexism is an open secret.

NewsGram brings to you latest new stories in India

The colour biased mentality is so strong in India that fair n lovely/handsome ads to people not getting jobs because of their complexion seems to be way too normal. The issue is so deep-seated that every matrimonial advert are seen to be demanding for a fair bride or groom. Dark skinned are dirty and dirty enough to be treated as dirt. As the dirt is wiped out to make a place clean, the skin lightening products or cosmetics are provided widely in the market to wipe out the dirt from the skin. A report in The Guardian mentions that Indians consumed 233 tonnes of skin whitening products in 2012.

Poulami Nag, a journalist in Delhi, said, “I developed an inferiority complex when I was young. Repeated comments on my skin colour made me feel bad, which gradually faded with time.” She added, “More or less, the most common question I faced was, how will you even marry if you are so dark-skinned?”

[bctt tweet=”The carnival of racism and sexism is an open secret in India.” username=””]

Slowly, the self-confidence starts chipping away with every comment and so-called ‘good suggestions’ that people give.

“Classmates would go on to say, the only thing I do not like about you is your skin colour; it’s so dark,” she said.

A few years back, a commercial for an “intimate wash” to whiten vaginas emerged, showing how a young Indian woman can use the product to successfully regain the attention of her boyfriend/husband.

The advertisement was widely panned, but matrimonial websites or newspaper columns clearly suggests the obsession India has for fair skin, at least on a woman’s face, as it remains one of the major keys to getting attention.

Go to NewsGram and check out news related to political current issues

The mass market whitening pioneer of India was “Fair & Lovely”, which was launched in 1975 by the Hindustan Unilever. Emami, an Indian consumer group came up with “Fair and Teen” for the teenage girls and “Fair and Handsome” for the men.

And, ‘Fair and handsome’ is promoted by one of the biggest superstars of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan.

Shabarni Basu, Assistant Professor of Kalyani University

Shabarni Basu, assistant professor of Kalyani university, Kolkata while talking to NewsGram said, “It is sad that in our country beauty is synonymous with fair skin. Fair skin is a pre-requisite when you get married or in other social engagements. I am a firm believer that in no way skin tone has got any role to play in how you look. It is your personality and the way you carry yourself matters.”

She further added, “It’s high time society rises above these prejudices and embrace people for who they are and not discriminate on some goddamn issues over which one has no control. Such objectification, especially in the case of women in modern society, has no place.”

Recently, actor Tannishtha Chatterjee was present at a popular Tv show, Comedy Nights Bachao to promote her film, Parched.

The actress thought it would be a regular TV affair and some random jokes but it almost turned out to be a nightmare for her.

Apparently, the hosts felt it was funny or an act of ‘roast’ to make jibes at Tannishtha’s complexion. In a national television, the host referred to her as ‘kali kalooti’ and felt nothing inappropriate or wrong in asking if the actress has been eating jamun (blackberries) since childhood because of which mooh kala hai (she is dark skinned).

Look for latest news from India in NewsGram

This shows how deeply embedded this issue is. It seems absolutely normal to make fun of something over which one has no control.

That being said, there is an urgent need to inculcate the self-acceptance in ourselves before blaming the world. Consciously or unconsciously one need to stop catering to the demands of others. Be it celebrities or common people, one need to accept their plus-size body, dark skin, crooked teeth, birthmark on the face, without trying to fit the criteria of beauty by doing plastic or cosmetic surgeries.

– reported by Pinaz Kazi of NewsGram. Twitter: @PinazKazi

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2016 NewsGram

Next Story

Biggest Black Lives Matter Facebook page is fake: Report

Black Lives Matter is a global movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against racism and other violence towards black people

Facebook is working on launching Athena, its own Internet satellite, early in 2019, the WIRED reported. Pixabay

The biggest Black Lives Matter page on Facebook was fake with ties to a middle-aged white man in Australia, according to a CNN report. The page, titled simply “Black Lives Matter,” had almost 700,000 followers on Facebook, more than twice as many as the official Black Lives Matter page, the report said late Monday.

Facebook was accused of leaking data to Cambridge Analytica earlier this year.

It was tied to online fundraisers that brought in at least $100,000 that supposedly went to Black Lives Matter causes in the US.At least some of the money, however, was transferred to Australian bank accounts, according to the report. The page consistently linked to websites tied to Ian Mackay, a National Union of Workers official in Australia. The union represents thousands of workers across various industries.

Mackay has registered dozens of websites, many on issues tied to black rights. In April 2015, Mackay registered Mackay’s name, email address, phone number and other details appeared in the registration records for the site until July 2015, when the website enabled a feature that allows site owners to hide their identities and contact information.

Also Read: Facebook To Scrutinize Political Ads More

Fundraising campaigns associated with the Facebook page were suspended by PayPal and Patreon after CNN contacted each of the companies for comment. Donorbox and Classy had already removed the campaigns.The discovery raises new questions about the integrity of Facebook’s platform and the content hosted on the social media platform.

In the run-up to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before Congress this week, the social media giant has announced plans to make the people running large pages verify their identity and location. Only after almost a week of emails and calls between CNN and Facebook about this story, the page was suspended. Facebook was told of concerns about the page some time ago, Patrisse Cullors, a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, told CNN

The social media app is in news for all the wrong reasons lately. VOA

Black Lives Matter upon suspecting the page was a scam, contacted Facebook about removing it a few months ago, Cullors added. Black Lives Matter is a global movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against racism and other violence towards black people. IANS