At a time when senior superstars, Shah Rukh Khan, Ajay Devgn and Akshay Kumar who should know better, are brazenly selling cancer (a.k.a gutka, paan masala) to the nation, Bollywood’s youngest superstar Kartik Aaryan has resolutely said no to a tempting offer to endorse Paan Masala.
When I double-checked this news with a prominent ad guru, he confirmed it saying, “That’s right. That boy Kartik Aaryan has said no to around Rs. 8-9 crore offer to endorse paan masala. Kartik seems to have principles, a rare commodity in today’s actors who suffer from the gift of the ‘grab’. Saying no to such big money is not easy. But Kartik is conscious of his responsibility as a youth icon.”
Former chairperson of the censor board and producer Pahlaj Nihalani also endorses Kartik Aayan’s decision not to endorse harmful products. “Paan masala is killing people. Being encouraged to take gutka and paan masala by Bollywood role models is definitely damaging to the nation’s health.”
Akshay Kumar has a very clean image. He is seen as a hero of the masses. Then why is he promoting a brand of paan masala? Others like Govinda and even Pierce Brosnan are known to have promoted paan masala.
Shockingly Pahlaj Nihalani reveals that the broadcasting of alcohol and paan masala ads is illegal and unconstitutional. “Law forbids the CBFC from granting certification to paan masala and alcohol ads. Therefore, the ads for these products being broadcast are illegal. Actors who are part of such ads should know they’re participating in an illegal activity.”