Petition Closed
Petitioning Actiogen, US Ms. Chanda Zaveri and 5 others

Take Down Discriminatory Ad. Lead the Change. #disbcampaign


“Fair and Handsome” and Shah Rukh Khan: We don't want ZYADA (more); we've had ENOUGH of fairness products and “unfair” advertising.  #disbcampaign  #darkisbeautiful

In the new “Fair and Handsome” ad, Shah Rukh Khan tosses a tube of fairness cream to a young fan. In the next scene, the boy’s skin grows whiter, his smile brightens and his hopes rise. The message: Fair skin is a prerequisite for success.

Such irresponsible advertising propagates discrimination among men, women— and even children.

Actress Nandita Das has observed, “Now the insecurities of men are also surfacing with equal number of fairness products for them. Such pressure and so little public debate around it!”

Now is the time to let “Fair and Handsome” and brand ambassador Shah Rukh Khan know that our country is ready to shed age-old biases and let every person feel comfortable in their own skin.

Join us in calling Emami, the cosmetics company behind “Fair and Handsome,” and its brand ambassador, Shah Rukh Khan, to suspend this discriminatory ad campaign.

Join us in challenging Emami to lead the change by introducing products that complement all complexions and that focus on healthy skin and protection against skin cancer.

This petition is the latest initiative of the Dark is Beautiful campaign. Since 2009, the campaign has been challenging women and girls to see “Beauty Beyond Colour.” Now, with this petition, we are speaking up for men and boys, who are also targets of “unfair” advertising.

Together, let us raise our voices to reflect a nation that celebrates every shade of beautiful and handsome!

Kavitha Emmanuel, for Dark is Beautiful

Letter to
Actiogen, US Ms. Chanda Zaveri
Canvas Films Mr. Raj Kumar Hirani
Director, Canvas Films Mr. Shakun Batra
and 3 others
Mr. Shah Rukh Khan
Director, Emami Group Mr. Mohan Goenka
Creative Director, Situations Advertising Mr. Milind Nabar (Creative Director, Situations Advertising)
Take down discriminatory “Fair and Handsome” ad

Dear Sir/Madam,
The new “Fair and Handsome” ad featuring Shah Rukh tells the youth of our nation that success depends hugely upon having fair skin. It targets young boys with a message tainted with colourism and discrimination.

We do not want to see the next generation define their worth according to a hierarchy of colour.

We call on you to suspend the discriminatory “Fair and Handsome” ad campaign immediately.

While the re-launched “Fair and Handsome” claims to offer “more” of what the Indian consumer wants, the reality is that we have had enough of products aimed at lightening Indian skin. While the product has more sunscreen, more oil control, etc., why is fairness still the main attraction?

As a leading brand, we ask you lead the change in creating:
1. New products that don’t treat colour as a problem to be corrected, but instead focus on promoting healthy skin and protection against skin cancer.
2. New attitudes about skin colour in media and marketing.

Mr. Mohan Goenka, will you respond to the new Indian consumer, who wants products that enhance their well-being, without feeling preyed upon by toxic cultural biases?

Mr. Raj Kumar Hirani, Mr. Milind Nabar and Mr. Shakun Batra, will you stand up for our youth and refuse to sell fair skin as the pathway to attractiveness, confidence and success?

Mr. Khan, we invite you to join celebrities like Nandita Das, and use your influence to promote the positive message, Beauty Beyond Colour.

We want ours to be a nation that encourages young people to pursue their dreams, without colour discrimination.