Calcutta Times turns traditional gender division into a new tradition of sisterhood in latest film

The Times of India (TOI) metro supplement for Indian city Kolkata, Calcutta Times has rolled out second edition of its campaign #NoConditionsApply with the aim to end gender bias and division in society.

The film, conceptualised by FCB Ulka, features transgender and widow women narrating how they aren’t allowed to touch goddesses and be a part of tradition of Shindoor Khela (where Bengali married women in India smear each other with vermilion as part of celebration). However, the campaign encourages these women to be a part of the traditions by inviting both transgenders and widowers to turn the tradition of division into a tradition of sisterhood.

Swati Bhattacharya,chief creative officer, FCB Ulka said: “This movement wasn’t for those who had opted out. It was for those who had been pushed out. It was about erasing a line not drawn by them, but by others. About two dots of red with no barrier in between. Me and my other sister. My transgender sister. My widowed sister. My sex worker sister. My outlier sister. It was about equality in symbology. Because after all, that is where it all begins and where it all flows back to. Every progressive, inclusive thought is only as powerful as the ritual it permeates. At least in a country like India – where ritual is everything” 

Rohit Ohri, group chairman and chief executive officer, FCB India said:  “I have a special connection with this campaign. Having been born and brought up in Kolkata, Durga Puja was something I always looked forward to in my growing up years. Sarbojanin Durga Puja was how I always remembered it. Sarbojanin means for everyone.”

Sumeli Chatterjee, vice president, brand TOI said: “#NoConditionsApply is an initiative that is close to our heart and existence. There is a lot of talk of diversity of gender, this highlights the need to have diversity even within the gender. While we have hosted this inclusive Shindoor Khela initiative in Kolkata, the messaging is relevant to every occasion and every festivity.

“When we talk of gender equity, we cannot limit our conversations to only ambition and opportunities; we need to talk about inclusion in festivals, celebrations and every walk of life that will allow everyone to walk that step together. No celebration can every be complete without including one and all.”

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