afaqs! news bureau

Rajshree Pan Masala ads resurface online, social media asks: ad or social message?

A series of old ads from the brand has once again become the subject of discussion on social media.

Every brand wants its ads to be memorable. It hopes that people will revisit it or at least talk about it for years. Rajshree Pan Masala has achieved just that- but rather unintentionally. Its years’ old ads have resurfaced on the internet and have once again become a subject of discussion. Twitterati is now mocking the pan masala ad packaged in a social message.

Though advertising of pan masala is not allowed in India anymore, these brands continue to make their presence felt through their other products like flavoured cardomoms. These brands position their products as a symbol of masculinity and success. For example, Vimal Elaichi's latest ad with its three superstars - Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar and Ajay Devgn- portrays machismo and male camaraderie. Or the Pan Bahar ad with actors Tiger Shroff and Mahesh Babu promises a successful life complete with flashy cars, expensive homes, helicopters and exotic vacations. Its tagline itself is 'Pehchan kamyabi ki'.

Featuring the veteran actor Annu Kapoor, the series of ads are quite unlike the usual pan masala ads. For starters, they don’t claim to make you successful. Rather it urges the audience to do their bit for society, while actually selling its pan masala!

With its 'goody two shoes' peg, the ad is more in the league of Rajnigandha Pearls ads. As its popular jingle says 'Dil bada toh tu bada', the Rajnigandha ads sell their silver coated elaichi on the qualities of kindness and goodness. Its slogan is 'Achchai ki ek alag chamak hoti hai'.

The ads begin with Kapoor speaking on a social issue, like drunk driving, dowry, child adoption or saving water. Just as you begin to think that this is another one of the government public service announcements (PSA), the ad sees a twist. The Antakshari host suddenly transforms into the pan masala brand’s endorser and leaves everyone stunned with a succinct line "Swaad mein soch hai".

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