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Dainik Bhaskar says no more reference to woman’s skin tone in its matrimonial ads

The Hindi daily announced that it will not publish matrimonial ads containing words such as ‘fair’, ‘wheatish’, in an attempt to fight colourism.

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New Delhi: One of India’s most circulated Hindi-language newspapers, Dainik Bhaskar, has said that it will no longer publish matrimonial advertisements that mention details of a woman’s skin tone or colour complexion.

“Bhaskar group has decided that the newspaper will refrain from publishing descriptions containing words like ‘white’, ‘wheatish’, or ‘fair’ in matrimonial advertisements. We need to stand against such colourism to be a progressive society,” Dainik Bhaskar’s Managing Director Sudhir Agarwal released a statement on Twitter.

“Every daughter has a unique personality and ability which go beyond her complexion. The social initiative by Bhaskar is being done with the intention to create this awareness,” the tweet, in Hindi, mentioned.

‘Good decision’, ‘commendable step’

The tweet, that has now gone viral, has met with warm responses from Twitterati. Many Twitter users welcomed Dainik Bhaskar’s announcement to ban such words in its advertisements.

“A step towards creating a better world,” said user Pratibha Singh. User Pratima Pandey called it a ‘great initiative’.

User Nishant Upadhyay suggested that other newspapers should also follow suit.

Appreciating the daily’s decision, user Puneri Domkavala said, “In a country like ours, wherein dark complexion is a norm because of weather, fair skin narrative is CRIMINAL”.

Questions about caste, physical features of men

Amid the announcement receiving applause on social media, many also attempted to draw the newspaper’s attention towards the advertisements that mention caste and details of complexion and physical features of men.

Dilip Mandal shared a screenshot of an advertisement that mentioned caste, in response to Dainik Bhaskar’s tweet.

“Will you also stop advertising like – looking for a groom with fair complexion, tall, handsome and smart,” asked user Mahesh Gupta.

Meanwhile, another user suggested that they should also not forget to use gender-inclusive pronouns.

One tweet underlined that the move will only stop such information from being published in the newspaper but won’t make much difference to the issue.

Also read: Opinionated, on Twitter and from LSR, JNU? Good luck in India’s shaadi bazaar

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