Dettol sponsored ‘Swachh Banega India’ Campaign at NDTV is misguiding the viewers.
How? It’s towing the BJP Government’s line to dissociate Mahatma Gandhi as a guiding light for non-violence and communal harmony in India; and instead associate the legend and the Father of the Nation with Cleanliness Drive. How it’s doing that, using Mahatma Gandhi’s favorite Hymn : Viashnav Jan To Tene Kahiye Re, Peer Parayee jane re (A good person is the one who understands the pain of the others).
The Dettol sponsored campaign is going a step further and is trying to link the Mani Ratnam Directed movie, Bombay, to Cleanliness Drive. How? It’s using the movie Theme instrumental for the cleanliness Drive campaign. The pegging is unfortunate as the movie Bombay was about ‘Communal Harmony’. Or if said more clearly about harmony between Hindus and Muslims. I assume, NDTV might have taken the line, from purely money Perspective.
Everyone is trying to associate Gandhi with everything other than non-violence and communal harmony. This becomes clear when one sees Mahatma’s iconic Spectacles (glasses) on Modi Government’s “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan” (No wonder, the country is as clean as four years ago. You can’t fool people all the time, someone said.).
But remember, when a person’s right is denied, see where he stages the protest? Under a Mahatma Gandhi Statue.
Hence, it’s up to the Nation and the Media, what it wants Gandhi to symbolize. If they want Gandhi to become a man who fought for cleanliness; then they should search for someone else to symbolize non-violence and communal harmony.
PS: Advertising agencies will try to use such clever associations to help their Client. Business will try to milk the ongoing sentiment. Hence, it’s Media’s responsibility to tell the people of such clever tactics. Else, very soon Media will lose its place as a 4th pillar of a democracy.