AIDS prevention has a new ambassador in Kolkata - Bula-diBy Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Thursday, March 3, 2005
In Kolkata AIDS prevention has a new mascot – Bula di.
Note: “di” is a Bengali suffix (short form of “didi”) which means elder sister.
Bula-di is a doll. You can see her in billboards around the city teaching about AIDS in no uncertain terms. She informs through simulated dialogs how drug abuse or blood transfusion could lead to AIDS, including the obvious ways. An admirable effort I must say.
What concerns me is that such prominently displayed billboards are viewable by everyone, including children. Physical and sexual abuse of children is a major offense in most countries, including India. What about visual abuse? What about subjecting children to simulated dialogs (as in these ads) which requires knowledge of sex to comprehend the meaning? With their inquisitive minds, with their friends as guides and some errant parents it doesn’t take much to add 2 and 2.
Is this collateral damage of impressionable minds appropriate?