Eros Now might be named after the Greek god of love, but it appears to have taken its things a bit too far with its Navrati messaging.
‘Boycott Eros Now’ is trending on social media after users were horrified at its Navratri posts on Facebook and Twitter. On Facebook, Eros Now shared a set of photographs saying “N stands for naughty, so does Navratri. Chalo, which pick-up line would you use to woo your bae this festive season?”
It’s hard to understand why someone would want to share pick up lines on a festival that centers around worshipping goddesses, but social media users were aghast at how crass some of the “pick up lines” were. One pick-up line featured Katrina Kaif in a suggestive pose, with the text “Do you want to put the ‘ratri’ in my Navratri,” next to her.
Another such ‘pick-up line’ featured a lasciviously-staring Ranveer Singh, his finger on his lips, saying “Let’s have some majama in my pajama.”
Perhaps the most shocking was an overt phallic reference, with a creepy-looking Salman Khan saying “You need a dandi to play dandiya — I have one.”
Predictably, outrage on Twitter followed. “Serial Offender @ErosNow DENIGRATING Hindu Religion & Festivals. This is how they are portraying Navratri,” wrote Twitter user @rose_k01.
Some social media users compared how Eros Now had somberly wished people on other festivals, but appeared to be singling out Navratri for mocking.
Others said that Eros Now’s hypocrisy was specifically anti-Hindu.
Some people couldn’t believe a prominent brand had come up with such a campaign. “Dear @ErosNow , are you drunk?” wrote Sukesh Nakhua.
Activist Ramesh Solanki threatened Eros Now with legal action. “Dear @krishikalulla and @ErosNow get ready to face legal music for insulting and hurting the sentiments of Hindus,” he wrote.
India hasn’t been nicely disposed towards Bollywood of late — amid charges of nepotism, its connections with the ISI, the mysterious death of Sushant Singh Rajput, and revelations of drug use among big stars, Bollywood’s image has taken a serious battering in recent times. There had always been simmering resentment against OTT platforms for their overt anti-Hindu content, but with Twitter accounts like Gems of Bollywood revealing the subtle Hinduphobia of old Bollywood films, Bollywood has also developed a reputation for being anti-Hindu. So when a prominent production house decided to wish people with overtly sexual pick-up lines for a Hindu festival, a backlash was inevitable. Eros might merely have been trying to be funny, but it clear that its ‘joke’ hasn’t gone down well on social media.