'Can access WhatsApp chats but can't show video': Twitter reacts to 'attack' on Tanishq store in Gandhidham

A Tanishq jewellery showroom in Gandhidham town of Gujarat's Kutch district put up a note on its door, apologising to Hindus in the district over the brand's controversial TV ad which has been withdrawn.

The handwritten note in Gujarati also condemned the TV commercial.

"We apologise to Hindu community of Kutch on the shameful advertisement of Tanishq," the note read. It was pasted on the showroom's door on October 12, and has since been removed, police said.

Photos of the apology note have gone viral on social media.

However, a report by NDTV asserted that the store had put out an apology after it had been attacked by a mob.

A section of Twitter condemned the act with some calling it "BJPs goonda raj", given that Gujarat is the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

However, the showroom manager and local police rubbished media reports.

"No such attack has taken place," said Superintendent of Police, Kutch-East, Mayur Patil.

This led to NDTV receiving flak for reporting "fake news."

The ad on interfaith love triggered a furious backlash on social media with some accusing the jewellery brand of promoting 'love jihad', prompting the company on Tuesday to withdraw the film citing hurt sentiments and the well-being of its staff.

It said in a statement that it was "deeply saddened with the inadvertent stirring of emotions". The film, it added, had "stimulated divergent and severe reactions, contrary to its very objective".

The company's move prompted intense debate on social media and elsewhere, just as the ad to promote its jewellery collection Ekatvam (oneness) had deepened societal faultlines since its release last week.

"We are deeply saddened with the inadvertent stirring of emotions and withdraw this film keeping in mind the hurt sentiments and well-being of our employees, partners and store staff," a Tanishq spokesperson said in a statement.

The idea behind the Ekatvam campaign is to celebrate the coming together of people from different walks of life, local communities and families during these challenging times and celebrate the beauty of oneness, the spokesperson added.

The 43 second commercial, which led to the hashtag #BoycottTanishq trending on Twitter, shows a pregnant woman being led to her bridal shower, a Hindu custom called 'godh bharai', by a woman who viewers later realise is her mother-in-law.

The young woman, in a sari and bindi, addresses the older one, in a salwar kurta and a dupatta covering her head, as 'Ma' and asks, "But you don't celebrate this custom?" The mother responds with a gentle, "The tradition of keeping daughters happy is there in every home." Setting the scene of a composite family, a woman in a hijab, people in saris and a man in a skullcap can be seen in the backdrop.

The description of the video on YouTube read: "She is married into a family that loves her like their own child. Only for her, they go out of their way to celebrate an occasion that they usually don't. A beautiful confluence of two different religions, traditions, cultures." The commercial opened the floodgates of debate and trolling with a flurry of tweets, some angry and threatening, demanding a ban on the advertisement and a boycott of the brand, a Tata product.

Tanishq first disabled comments and likes/dislikes on its ad on YouTube, and on Tuesday withdrew the video altogether.

The polarisation was evident right since October 9 when the ad was first released with many people slamming Tanishq for projecting "fictional" interfaith union and promoting 'love jihad', a term reference to an alleged campaign by Muslims to convert Hindu girls in the guise of love. And many others lauding it for showing a syncretic, harmonious India.

With PTI inputs

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