After weeks of speculation, Narendra Modi government on Monday finally admitted to have dropped actor Aamir Khan from Incredible India campaign because of his intolerance comments against the central government.
Speaking in Ahmedabad, the department of industrial policy and promotion secretary Amitabh Kant said that the actor had damaged the brand identity of the country with his remarks on intolerance.
“A brand ambassador promotes a brand. People will come to India and tourist flow will increase only if the brand ambassador of ‘Incredible India’ promotes India as incredible India. But if the brand ambassador of India says India is intolerant, he is surely not working as a brand ambassador of India,” Kant was quoted as saying.
He was speaking at the 36th convocation of National Institute of Design, where he was invited as the chief guest.
Kant said, “He is damaging the brand identity of the country. People will not come to India after hearing him. An ambassador has to promote the brand, not destroy the brand. The brand ambassador must be the best brand ambassador for promoting India, he cannot be the destroyer of the brand.”
Aamir, while reacting to the news of his removal had revealed that he had never charged any money for his services as the brand ambassador of the Incredible India campaign, a key government of India initiative to promote tourism in the country.
Union Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma had first issued statement confirming that Aamir still remained the face of the campaign only to perform a U-Turn few hours later.