BJP yuva Morcha president Tejaswi Surya on Monday slammed Fabindia for its ad campaign for calling Diwali "Jashn-e-Riwaaz". The BJP leader said that Fabindia "must face economic costs for such deliberate misadventures".
"Deepavali is not Jashn-e-Riwaaz. This deliberate attempt of abrahamisation of Hindu festivals, depicting models without traditional Hindu attires, must be called out," Surya tweeted.
Several social media users have objected to yet another appropriation of a Hindu festival and sentiments.
The cultural appropriation has left social media users uncomfortable, just ahead of another Hindu festival. Not many favored Diwali being loosely translated to ‘Jashn-e-Riwaaz’.
Author, speaker and textile enthusiast, Shefali Vaidya slammed Fabindia for ‘de-Hinduising’ festivals. “Wow @FabindiaNews great job at de-Hinduising Deepawali! Call it a ‘festival of love and light’, title the collection ‘Jashn-e-Riwaaz’, take Bindis off foreheads of models but expect Hindus to buy your overpriced, mass produced products in the name of ‘homage to Indian culture’!” she tweeted.
Forceful cultural appropriation of Hindu festivals
In a tweet on October 9 by Fabindia, some male and female models were shown in saris and kurta pyjamas. The accompanying tweet said, "As we welcome the festival of love and light, Jashn-e-Riwaaz by Fabindia is a collection that beautifully pays homage to Indian culture." Interestingly, the advertisement campaign released by the brand is a complete mismatch with the title chosen for the Diwali collection. Fabindia’s ‘Jashn-e-Riwaaz’ video campaign ironically features the rich culture and tradition of Rajasthan.
The ad then focuses on Rajasthani traditions, rituals, food and finally the couture to highlight the richness, heritage and legacy of Diwali, a festival celebrated by lighting diyas, bursting crackers and distributing sweets amongst other traditions to mark the win of good over evil.
One of the most significant Hindu festivals, Diwali commemorates the return of Lord Shri Ram after defeating the evil that was Ravana. This is precisely why several users were left bewildered with the usage of a heavy Urdu phrase to name a traditional collection exclusively designed for a Hindu festival.