Akshay Kumar drops tobacco endorsement after his pan masala ad with SRK and Ajay Devgan receives backlash

Published 21 Apr, 2022 11:45am

Images Staff

The actor apologised to his fans and promised to "contribute the entire endorsement fee towards a worthy cause".

Photos: Vimal Elaichi/YouTube
Photos: Vimal Elaichi/YouTube

Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar is known for his healthy habits and fitness journey so when he decided to join pan masala brand Vimal and endorse a tobacco product, fans were not very happy about it. They called him out and the Atrangi Re actor was quick to respond. He apologised and backed out, promising to do better.

On April 21, the 54-year-old actor issued an official statement on his Instagram following the backlash. "I am sorry. I would like to apologise to you, all my fans and well-wishers. Your reaction over the past few days has deeply affected me," he wrote in a lengthy note. "While I have not and will not endorse tobacco, I respect the outpouring of your feelings in light of my association with Vimal Elaichi. With all humility, I step back."

Kumar added that he will donate the entire endorsement fee towards a worthy cause. "The brand might continue airing the ads till the legal duration of the contract that is binding upon me, but I promise to be extremely mindful in making my future choices. In return I shall forever continue to ask for your love and wishes," he concluded.

The Bell Bottom actor was featured in an ad for Vimal Elaichi alongside actors Shah Rukh Khan and Ajay Devgan, who have been associated with the pan masala company for a while now. The ad was posted on YouTube on April 16 and stirred up a storm on social media as netizens called out Kumar for going against his past claims about living a healthy life, devoid of drugs and alcohol.

Twitter users pointed out the "hypocrisy" after quoting his earlier statements.

Some even posted the interview, transforming it into a meme.

Kumar has a huge fanbase that's ecstatic about his change in plans.

Sometimes the influencer is the one influenced — it's good to see the actor come to terms with the influence he has and avoid using it to endorse products that may be harmful for others. Fans love their fitness king and Kumar is remain just that for them.