Akshay Kumar steps down as tobacco brand ambassador: With all humility, I step back

Edited By: Shomini Sen
New Delhi Updated: Apr 21, 2022, 12:49 PM(IST)

Akshay Kumar Photograph:( Twitter )

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Akshay had become the latest Bollywood celebrity after Shah Rukh Khan and Ajay Devgn to feature in the advertisements for the tobacco company Vimal.

After facing severe backlash over his association with a tobacco company, Bollywood superstar on Thursday announced that he was stepping down as the brand ambassador of the company with whom he had recently signed a contract.

The actor, in a lengthy social media post apologised for hurting the sentiments of people.

"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. 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. I have decided to contribute the entire endorsement fee towards a worthy cause," Akshay Kumar wrote on Instagram.

The actor said that he would be mindful in making future choices."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 said.

Heres' Akshay Kumar's full statement: 

Akshay had become the latest Bollywood celebrity after Shah Rukh Khan and Ajay Devgn to feature in the advertisements for the tobacco company Vimal.

Recent ads showed both Ajay Devgn and Shah Rukh Khan welcoming Akshay Kumar with the 'Vimal salute'.

Akshay's inclusion to the brand did not go down well with many of his fans. They even shared old videos of him talking about his dislike for alcohol, cigarettes, and other things to remind him of what he had spoken about in the past and in a bid to make him change his decision. 

In October 2021, superstar Amitabh Bachchan too faced similar backlash for becoming the brand ambassador of a tobacco company. The actor had to eventually step down and in a statement issued by his office, he said he wasn't aware that it fell under 'surrogate advertising'. 

Amitabh Bachchan steps down as the face of tobacco brand post backlash 

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