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July 15, 2009

Gandhi in an ad

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — neosurya @ 23:17

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the father of our nation is now in ads. Apple has an ad whose images can be seen on  their website. Video of the ad is here. A cellphone company in Italy has a video campaign about Gandhi.

Interestingly, Gandhi’s descendants had tried to litigate a foreign producer earlier, but lost the case because the Indian Government did not have jurisdiction over foreigners. An article from outlining his thoughts:

Meanwhile, CMG Worldwide put forward another business proposal. It wanted to be the sole agent for the commercial use of the Mahatma’s name. “I considered this proposal seriously because I thought it would be a good opportunity to police the use of Bapuji’s image and prevent any misrepresentation. The company was to refer every commercial project to me for approval,” says Tushar Gandhi. He recalls his failed attempt to prosecute the producers of the Nikki Bedi show, when one of the guests on the TV programme insulted Mahatma Gandhi. “No action could be taken against them because Nikki Bedi as well as Rupert Murdoch, the Star TV owner, were foreigners. I felt that CMG Worldwide would be able to tackle such cases better since they are abroad,” he says.


According to Tushar Gandhi, although no agreement had been reached, CMG Worldwide announced Mahatma Gandhi as one of its new clients. (CMG Worldwide did not respond to queries sent to it by this correspondent.) “If nobody in India understands why I was getting into this deal, it wasn’t worth my while to continue with it. I broke all ties with CMG Worldwide, and returned two cheques they had sent for the advertisement. However, I still feel that we relinquished a good opportunity to protect Bapuji’s image and get some funds for restoration,” Tushar Gandhi explains.

The author of an article says that he will never buy an Apple product because he has been put off by the ad. An excerpt from the article:

Were Apple merely selling computers it would only be grubby to use Gandhi’s picture. Instead, of course, they’re trying to sell each of us an image of ourselves. Which is precisely what Gandhi spent his life trying to help people strip away. In the fight for Indian independence (against the biggest brand name of his era, the British Empire), he succeeded in helping a nation shrug off its own internalized sense of subjugation, its own sense that Britishness, like Appleness, was superior. And he did it without trying to substitute the usual nationalist passions.

Another interesting article about Gandhi, and how his image is twisted by our politicians:

Perhaps we should not be perturbed about such mischievous distortion of Gandhi’s writings. After all, we have had Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon pay homage at Raj Ghat.

This is the same Mr. Sharon, who has been indicted by an Israeli Government Commission as responsible for the killing of thousands of Palestinians in Lebanon in 1982. And we had Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi say on October 2 that his government was the only the State Government in the country to adhere to Gandhian principles.


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