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HomeIndiaI&B ministry tells YouTube, Twitter to remove 'inappropriate' Layer’r Shot ads, stops...

I&B ministry tells YouTube, Twitter to remove ‘inappropriate’ Layer’r Shot ads, stops TV telecast

The 2 ads, aired on Sony Liv during England versus New Zealand match, were earlier suspended by Advertising Standards Council of India following criticism for being 'disrespectful towards women'.

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New Delhi: The ministry of information and broadcasting Saturday ordered YouTube and Twitter to “immediately pull down all instances” of two new controversial Layer’r Shot advertisements, following social media furore over the content of the promos for the body spray brand for men.

Terming the advertisements “inappropriate and derogatory” in nature, the ministry also announced that the two ads had been suspended from television channels where they were broadcast earlier.

“An inappropriate & derogatory advertisement of a deodorant is circulating on social media. I&B Ministry has asked Twitter & YouTube to immediately pull down all instances of this ad. The TV channel on which it appeared has already pulled it down on directions of the Ministry,” the Information and Broadcasting ministry said in a statement.

The Advertising Standards Council of India had also “suspended” the two advertisements earlier in the day, “pending investigation”, after some on Twitter tagged the ASCI on the exchange on the advertisements.

“Thank you for tagging us. The ad is in serious breach of the ASCI Code and is against public interest. We have taken immediate action and notified the advertiser to suspend the ad, pending investigation,” the regulatory body wrote.

While many social media users have criticised the advertisements for being “disrespectful towards women” and “promoting rape culture”, Delhi Commission For Women (DCW) chairperson, Swati Maliwal tweeted Saturday that the advertisements reflected “toxic masculinity in its worst form” and that she has taken up the matter with the Delhi Police and Information and Broadcasting Ministry.


One of the offending advertisements, show a young couple in a bedroom. Four men — who appear to be friends of the man — enter the room without knocking and randomly ask about “getting a shot”. The men then proceed towards the couple, only to take the ‘Shot’ perfume bottle kept on the table.

The other ad feature the same four men in a convenience store. Standing behind a woman who is shopping at the store, the men are heard saying, ‘hum chaar woh ek, shot kaun lagayega (there are four of us, and there’s one, who will get a shot)”. As the woman in the ad appears visibly shocked at their words, one of the four reach out to grab the single bottle of Shot perfume on the rack in front.


Also read: Against traditions or religion, unpleasant — study finds what makes ads ‘offensive’ for Indians

Disgust & demand for removal of ads

Voicing anger at the advertisements, Maliwal tweeted, “Fuming at cringe worthy ads of the perfume ‘Shot’. They show toxic masculinity in its worst form and clearly promote gang rape culture! The company owners must be held accountable. Have issued notice to Delhi Police and written letter to I&B Minister seeking FIR and strong action.”

Outrage over the ads ranged from disgust to anger.

“There have to be some regulations for ads man. That Shot deo ad is nothing short of disgusting actually. Even though I knew it was an ad and it wouldn’t happen. The fear for a second I felt was real. Imagine making an ad on the fears of millions of women!,” a user wrote in a tweet.

Another questioned how such advertisements are approved.

“How does this kind of ads get approved, sick and outright disgusting. Is @layerr_shot full of perverts? Second ad with such disgusting content from Shot. @monikamanchanda,” she tweeted.

Others lashed out at “irresponsible advertisement” and urged broadcasters to remove the ads as it might send “vulgar and inappropriate messages to the youth”.

Many also demanded for the ads to be removed from air and for the team who “approved and pitched” for the content to be sacked.

(The story has been updated to remove reference to advertising agency Triton Communications.)

(Edited by Poulomi Banerjee)

Also read: From Zoozoos to Byju’s, Swiggy, Cred — how IPL ads tell us who’s watching cricket in India


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