Love Jihad

The title is symptomatic with the prevalent dispensation in the country, India, and liberals being cornered. The controversy in question is Tanishq’s ad depicting a baby shower for a Hindu wife and a Muslim husband.

For the uninitiated, Honeywell is to the USA what Tata’s is to India and Tanishq is Tata’s company solely catering to jewelry. With a right-wing government in its second consecutive term and its grip on power hardly in question, there is a fine line to tread when it comes to matters of the religion or for that matter, heart in this case.

In the latter half of 2018, the National Investigative Agency(NIA) probed 11 inter-faith marriages out of 89 in Kerala “and found no evidence of Love Jihad” Clearly, marriages have taken gargantuan proportions not away from the purview of central agencies.

The reason I fail to understand is what the shenanigans are all about. Who are we to judge if two consenting adults chose to live together in holy matrimony? Rich, poor, upper caste, lower caste, fair, dark, heterosexual, homosexual, and the list is endless. We as humans tend to celebrate consistency and dwell on the differences but then differences are exactly what makes us one. The only thing constant is change. Control what you can and leave the rest as is, what is beyond you.

The ad is tastefully done and I shall leave a link at the bottom for you to judge with a predisposition towards white or pure, celebrating a joyous occasion in the family. Here lies the irony, the ad for obvious reason was about the mass appeal but then no family likes external interference irrespective of the reason. The theme of the ad campaign was “Ekatvam” or oneness and I thought that the message was convincingly put across. Trust Murphy’s law – “Whatever can go wrong will go wrong.” Unfortunately in India, this has been happening with unnerving consistency often turning to violence or marches.

The ability to listen is falling on deaf ears, pun intended. I shudder to think, if an ad can create such a furore on Social Media then the day is not far for a censor board exclusively for online content and laws to punish the violators.

As a result of the backlash, Tanishq pulled the ad from the airwaves.


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