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India @75: Hari Chakyar on how advertising has been creating powerful stories

As India gears up to celebrate her 75th year of Independence, we at Adgully are tracing the journey of Advertising and its contribution to the Indian society at large – whether it is bringing about a change in mindsets, or a societal pattern, or empowering different communities or ushering in new thoughts – basically, Soch badal ke rakh diya.

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Our aim is to collate 75 most impressive and significant ways in which Advertising has impacted India over the decades. For this, we are reaching out to the Advertising Honchos of India to share the most significant contributions of Advertising to the Indian society and why they consider them to be important developments. We will serialise the story on Adgully’s website in the lead-up to the Independence Day this year in this special series: India @75 – Through the Advertising Lens.

In an interaction with Adgully, Hari Chakyar, Creative Director - Copy, Chimp&z Inc, noted, “Sure, advertising has a bad rap for “faking” campaigns for awards. But advertising is also responsible for creating powerful stories that got people talking about important issues.”

Chakyar lists four of his favourite ads…

Do Boond Zindagi Ke - If we have managed to eradicate polio from the country, advertising surely has had an important role to play in it. Advertising took the pulse polio campaign to everybody’s doorstep. It let people know that oral drops for children are safe and will cause no side effects. It gave the health workers on the ground the confidence to do their work with pride and dignity without the need to educate parents.

Balbir Pasha ko AIDS hoga kya? - This campaign took an uncomfortable topic and got people talking about it. Till date, this is the most popular AIDS awareness campaign in the country.

Share The Load - This campaign spoke about something everybody was aware of but turned a blind eye to. Invisible, unpaid labour at home. Share the load asked men to be nicer and share the burden of running a household. Yet another example of advertising initiating the conversations required to bring about changes in society.

Kerala Is Open - Kerala was recovering from the worst flood situation when Samsonite’s balm of a film dropped. It let the world know that Kerala was back to welcoming tourists once more. The film made its audience emotional and helped the state get back to its feet by encouraging tourism.

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