Hindustan Unilever receives flak for Kumbh Mela tea ad over ‘abandoning’ parents, #BoycottHindustanUnilever trends on Twitter

Social media can make you popular in minutes and it can take away that popularity in seconds. Same has happened to consumer goods giant Hindustan Unilever. The company behind products like Surf Excel, Lux, Kwality Wall’s, Fair and Lovely, Vaseline and others has received severe backlash on social media after the company posted an ad on their Twitter page.

With an ad for its ‘Red Label Tea’, Hindustan Unilever had tweeted, “Red Label encourages us to hold the hands of those who made us who we are. Watch the heartwarming video; an eye opener to a harsh reality.”


In the ad, a son can be seen making an attempt to abandon his father, but he has a change of heart after seeing another father-son bond. He returns to his father with a cup of tea instead. A message appears towards the end of the clip says, “Kumbh Mela is the largest religious gathering in the world. At this gathering, many elderly are abandoned by their families. This Kumbh, let’s hold the hands of those who made us who we are.”

Hindustan Unilever was widely criticised for taking potshots at the religious fanfare. Enraged users of the microblogging platform have called out the company for maligning the Maha Kumbh, reducing it to just a venue where old people are left behind. Many social media users said that ad hurt sentiments of Hindus and portrayed Kumbh Mela in the wrong light. After people started criticising the company, “#BoycottHindustanUnilever” started trending on Twitter.

Here’s what Twitter users had to say:

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