A judge has ordered Pepsi to withdraw a television commercial that has angered child-labour activists. The commercial depicts a ten-year old boy carrying pepsi to the Indian cricket team, negotiating a difficult route to them, finally emerging from an underground tunnel.
"We are against multinationals using children in advertising that shows child labour in a positive light," said activist Santosh Shinde of the Mumbai-based voluntary group Balpraful. They launched a petition in Hyderabad, where a judge ruled it should be withdrawn.
A spokesperson for Pepsi said: "The boy is obviously delighted to get an opportunity to deliver drinks to the idolised team members. It is unfortunate that the advert has caused some anxiety despite the fact that there was no such intention."
"The India media and the ad agencies are irresponsible," said Uma Bhopal Rai, who filed the petition. "They just can't convey the message that it is all right for children to work instead of being at school. They make it acceptable. The fact that millions of viewers watch them and think it is okay makes me shudder."
Update: Found it! As of this posting, the commecial can be found here.