Jeev Milkha Singh has been appointed the Responsible Drinking Ambassador for the Johnnie Walker Classic golf tournament organised by Diageo. In its 17th year, the premium luxury golf event, which is going to be held in India for the first time ever, will be held in New Delhi from February 28 to March 2, 2008. The New Delhi launch is the first in a series of events that will be carried out over the next few months in key Indian cities - at on-premise locations and airports.
Singh kicked off the Responsible Drinking campaign around the event and was the first signatory on The Pledge. In this new role, he will encourage and extend his support to spread the message to consumers to sign the pledge to never drink and drive, reinforcing the Johnnie Walker brand's worldwide responsibility message of 'Winners always stay in control - never drink and drive.'
The campaign is aimed at getting alcohol consumers to realise their individual responsibilities and raise awareness about the importance of not driving when one has consumed alcohol. With the alcohol debate being an issue of responsibility and choice, The Pledge campaign will engage consumers by asking them to support the initiative. Diageo India will work closely with the Delhi traffic police to promote this message, which is still in the process of being finalised.
Asif Adil, managing director, Diageo India, says, "In 2008, we are committed to increase our commitment to responsible drinking and, therefore, Milkha Singh has been brought on board to propagate the message. The role of this golfing champion will revolve around raising awareness on issues of responsible drinking, particularly in relation to driving. In its simplest form, responsible drinking means that people need to be accountable for their own safety and that of those around them, whether this means planning ahead and taking a taxi, or appointing one of your friends to be the designated driver for the journey home. Unfortunately, there are still people who think it is acceptable to drink and drive, and we are determined to do all we can to help change these attitudes."
Since the very first event which was flagged off in 1990, the Johnnie Walker Classic golf tournament has been managed by the sports, lifestyle management and marketing company, IMG. The prize money for the event is US$2.5 million. The event has been played 15 times in seven countries and at 12 golf clubs in the past 17 years.