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“Ladki Kare To Nude, Ladka Kare To Dude” – A 30 Second Ad That Exposes Our Double Standards

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By Sanskriti Pandey:

What do you get when you put an ordinary situation in a room with some people and a Havells fan? An advert that will have you chuckle for a good minute! Havells is known to tackle common issues with subtlety in its quirky ads, and here’s a good one for you to watch.

Many people don’t recognise sexism in everyday things. Feminists gone crazy? Not really! This one deals with film certification. Who decides what qualifies as adult content, and is their rationalisation unintentionally sexist? This tongue-in-cheek ad is a must watch, and as it customarily promises – “Hawa Badlegi“.

To know more about what I think of this video, follow me on Twitter at @im_sanskriti.

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  1. B

    Dear Sanskriti, a man cannot be topless, only a woman can be topless. Women have something known as breasts and they are sexual organs. That is why a woman’s nipple becomes erect during sexual intercourse, and many women can orgasm through nipple stimulation. Men and women are two distinct and different beings, endowed with different qualities by the creator to fulfill their God given roles in life. Men and women are different physically, biologically, psychologically, emotionally, mentally, anatomically. Men and women think differently, act differently, behave differently, and react differently. Men and women are different.

    1. Nora

      Well, you said it rightly. Men and Women are DIFFERENT. But, let’s not bring ‘GOD’ into the discourse, if we’re gonna look at it detachedly like you seem to have tried. I don’t understand as to what makes you so entitled as to say that breasts are ONLY sexual in nature, and that only women can be stimulated through nipples. That’s a gross misinformation right there. What, you think a male torso is not arousing?
      You’re missing the point about sexism here. Because of the patriarchal notion of censorship regarding nudity, I think your lenses are highly sexist. And it’s not you particularly. We are too used to seeing semi naked men than semi naked women. We’ve just been trained to think that breasts are always sexual in nature and thus the display of them is titillating. This is the general sort of idea running in society. This ad, thus gives one a lot to think about.

    2. B

      “We are too used to seeing semi naked men than semi naked women.”

      Your comment is filled with lies, and the above statement is icing on the cake. The reality is, this is the a country where women fight for their ‘right’ to wear miniskirts, skimpy tops, tight jeans, cleavage revealing dresses, short shorts, tight pants, backless dresses, spandex pants, leggings, sarees with skimpy blouses, transparent clothing, etc. Girls are revealing more skin in public, feminists are going topless in their so called protests, models are going nude for fashion shows, nude protests for PETA, nudity in magazines, art, movies, music videos, etc has escalated, and it is all being done by women.

    3. Nihaal

      how about a big ‘no’. big bulky man’s muscular body is ‘sexism’ too. People of very young age want to go gym, so that they get ‘attention’ in the society. Can you imagine your self without your mother’s breast, who breast-feeded you?
      ain’t it a God’s fault, who created man/female different?
      being tan/wheatish, and want only fair girl.whats that?
      Some Indians need to change there mentality. cause Fair and lovely is not working.

    4. Sanskriti Pandey

      B. To quickly counter all the points you wrote there:
      1. Breasts are sexual parts of the body, and men have breasts too, so the ‘sexual’ part applies to both. Ask me, I can tell you whether a naked male torso arouses me or not.
      2. Men and women are different, certainly, but how naive of you to disregard their similarities!
      3. ‘Creator’ and ‘god-given roles’ – I’m sorry, but could you keep personal spirituality preferences out of a discliplined debate? Because I could go on and on about your perceived ideas of ‘god-given’ things.
      4. “Men and women are different physically, biologically, psychologically, emotionally, mentally, anatomically. Men and women think differently, act differently, behave differently, and react differently. Men and women are different.” – This tirade basically underlines what you, appallingly, believe – that by virtue of being different, men and women are unequal. It doesn’t take 2 seconds for anyone to point whose side you’re on. I rest my argument.

    5. B

      1. Men do not have breasts. Only women have breasts.
      2. How naive of you to ignore their differences.
      3. They are facts, not preferences.
      4. 15 reasons why equality does not exist –

    6. Deep

      “Men and women are two distinct and different beings, endowed with different qualities by the creator to fulfill their God given roles in life” . ‘God’ created homosexuals too. But wait! so they are not fulfilling their ‘anatomical’ God given role, so ‘God’ created something completely useless? Then ‘God’ must make mistakes.. but .. err, ‘God’ is supposed to be perfect. WTF, I guess we ‘created’ God then. 😉

      That little link you quote, is as bizarre as it is illogical. Not because it doesn’t include some percentage of facts, but because of the blatant biased viewpoint. Like “Women always marry men who are richer, earn more, ‘well-settled’, and better educated” – sure.. just like “Men always marry women who are good-looking, better-skilled at ‘household’ chores and ‘shorter’ than them” … the reasons are as much with social perceptions, stigma, and ego, as it is with an eye on the ‘benefits’.

      Would a man be able to handle it if their wife was the breadwinner, and he had to stay home, take care of the kid, clean the house with a maid. And then in the evening the wife would come back and show some attitude if her work-day was a sh***y one?

      Just because something is being done for ages, doesn’t make it a ‘fact’ that that’s how is ought to be done. Perceptions, financial independence, strength and skill-sets are changing. The point here was about identifying the basic similarities, and not use the apparent differences to create a distinction.

      PS: “Only women have breasts” .. LOL. I sincerely hope you don’t grow up to be the parent who does your kid’s Biology homework.

    7. ananya

      Male nipples too become erect when aroused.
      Topless men are sexually attractive too.

    8. Sadhak Sinha

      Nice article Sanskriti, but unless I can see your own topless image with the article, I wouldn’t find the point convincing.

    9. Puneet Gulati

      Dear Sadhak Sinha
      Sir with all due respect if u r not aware of the differences between a male and female body then i will recommend that u read d 9th grade NCERT biology book. It will provide you with facts which have a scientfic basis for you to form a proper opinion. You dont know the author, she might send u a photoshopped pic. U just cannot believe these liberal journos, they are too intelligent and cunning for a naive person like u. Take care
      (I am not sure how uninformed in life u r so m just letting u knw that m being sacastic over here)

    10. Nidhi Mishra

      Last heard women,like men,
      evolved(not created) from primates and that men have what is called
      male breast. Male nipples also get
      erect on stimulation. And their is a thing called socialization. But you wouldn’t know. The Neanderthal never did.

  2. ItsJustMe

    I wouldn’t call it double standards, because a guy can be shirtless in a movie and a girl can’t be topless, simply because it is the ladies who chose to hide their breasts and create the social stigma around it. Now 30 generations later they want to walk around without tops, go ahead, but don’t complain that people are staring. Because it is not something we see often people might stare, because if you display it in a public place, the public have every right to look, likr you have every right to display it.
    Now just think of it this way, if either man or woman show their buttocks in a movie (or penis or vagina), it is still treated as nudity irrespective of sex. So there is nodouble standards there. Now should we be so conservative about censoring movies, is the right question. It is not about ladki kiya or ladka kiya. Its about “kiya tho kya, movie hain” And yes feminists have certainly gone crazy, especially in India

    1. Sanskriti Pandey

      1. Women don’t “choose” to be hide their breasts, women are Expected to keep them hidden. It’s called convention and fear of non-conformity. “Create social stigma” – so you’re saying that women ‘like’ being oppressed? *incredulous*
      2. Wow. “The right to look.” I’m not going to give a rebuttal here because this involves a debate around the basic ideas of feminist discourse that will require hours of explaining. Get in touch with me if you wish to have this discussion separately.
      3. “Kiya toh kya, movie hai.” Indignant at your complete shrugging off of responsible debates that Need to happen in civilised and equal societies!
      4. “Feminists have gone crazy” – back to point 2.

    2. ItsJustMe

      Women like being oppressed? Are we still talking about of being topless in public? Then women who agree with you will be a minority. Because majority of women do agree that it is nudity and is more comfortable hiding their breasts than exposing it. So how do you assume that women are oppressed by wearing a top, please do explain. Which brings me precisely to my point that feminists are in fact crazy. If “you” think you want to walk around topless, please go ahead. Why do you want to create false victimhood among other women saying they are oppressed because they wear a top? Or would like to hide the breast than show it? This is not women empowerment it is called ridiculousness. You can speak for yourself, but don’t assume women are on board just because you call yourself a feminist. You cannot give a rebuttal because it cannot be refused. Even if there is a rebuttal and explanation it act of looking will be instinctive rather than conscious one. Because when you see something unconventional your attention will inevitably be towards that thing. So yes people will stare, men and women alike. I am not saying they have the right to get an erection out of it. Just they have the right to find it odd and give it some attention. Any amount of explanation will not take that away. No matter who you are or what you believe, people have every right to look at you when you are in public

    3. rk

      please note that erection is an action governed by central nervous system from visual cortex every one has right to get erection but not to TOUCH during erection or RAPE during erection or sexual feeling. this feeling is natural and can’t be suppressed if you know what I mean.

    4. ItsJustMe

      What is the “wow” for? Have you even considered the rights of 100 others who pass by when someone walks around topless? I said precisely a public place. No the “wow” just confirms that you are more interested in the unconventional party’s rights. What are the others supposed to do, cover their eyes? Feminist discourse or should I say feminazist discourse. What you need to understand is living freely ( whatever your idea of freedom is, no matter how ridiculous it is) is not about making the whole society accept what you want. It’s about doing what you want despite how society views it and having the courage to face the society. It is not about writing an article in a website and creating a mass outrage over why women should cover their breasts. It’s about taking your top off and walking around ( if that’s your idea of freedom). Unfortunately you have no courage to do what you preach. You will wait around for your parents to accept it, then your neighbors, then your community, and finally you will turn around and society for their double standards. But the real reason is you and your insecurities. I remember 15 years women wearing jeans and tshirt was so uncommon and people used to be so skeptical about them. How did it change? Because women did it anyway despite how society viewed their style (still doing it in some places) and the society got used to it. Not because some self proclaimed feminist wrote about it in a paper or website.

  3. Puneet Gulatu

    It is not what is acceptable or not acceptable, it is about what we have come to accept as acceptable and not acceptable. All we have to do is to reject the acceptable norm. Every social norm created by humans is based on someone’s preference and it is definitely not our creator cz he/she/it sends us naked wid our minds as blank slates wid enough resources to make notes on it.
    According to my preference, which u r free to accept or reject, arousal was termed as wrong and whatever expresses our arousal physically was deemed to be covered up. Women’s nipples are more expressive of arousal than that of men’s so they should be covered. We dont see men with their penis danglig around because that is what expresses arousal in men, hence it is supposed be covered.
    I see it as a way to curb sexual freedom cz supposedly it is a taboo. Nevertheless the ad raises a good point.
    Ps: Mr/Ms B needs to experiment a li’l n he/she will realise that a man’s nipples are also sensitive during arousal.

    1. ItsJustMe

      You mean to say that since 12 women out of 100 feels they shouldn’t cover their breasts the whole society is supposed to follow them? Is there any value to majority opinion here? Social norms are man made, of course they are. Now if I tell you I want multiple wives / husbands at the same time, and everyone should accept it, will you ever accept that with your partner? It’s also a social norm. It is unacceptable right? So all I can do is have multiple wives/ husband and ignore people who doesn’t accept it. Similarly calling all women oppressed because they have chosen to hide their breasts is not the way to go. It’s about having the courage to walk around without a top because you believe in it. And not caring what society thinks of you for doing that

  4. rk

    This what we are becoming close to animals day by day and after years both men and women will walk naked on streets and fuck who ever they want and get AIDS and that will be the end of humanity please don’t fucking lie to your self girls can you or will you really want to go topless and fuck a random guy you want?? then please shut the fuck up please!!!!!!!!!!

    1. ItsJustMe

      Rk, u need to relax. Nobody said anything about fucking random guys.

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