A fresh Twitter debate has been triggered over British Empire, a beer brand of a Chennai-based company which is one of the IPL sponsors of Chennai Super Kings.
The British Empire, which was at its height the largest empire in history, had the Indian sub-continent as one of its colonies. Thus any mention of British Empire might bring to one’s mind the atrocities committed during the Raj.
Taking note of the infamous history of the British Empire and calling it “insensitive”, author and economist Sanjeev Sanyal asked if a company in Israel will advertise itself as ‘Nazi Germany’.
“Interesting that a company called ‘British Empire’ is a sponsor for an IPL team. Realise that it is just a company name, but wonder if a company called ‘Nazi Germany’ would advertise itself in Israel, or King Leopold in central Africa. Insensitive to say the least,” he tweeted, while re-tweeting a tweet by the brand itself.
Interesting that a company called “British Empire” is a sponsor for an IPL team. Realise that it is just a company name, but wonder if a company called “Nazi Germany” would advertise itself in Israel, or King Leopold in central Africa. Insensitive to say the least https://t.co/liplcLJuZ2
— Sanjeev Sanyal (@sanjeevsanyal) April 12, 2019
Many Twitter users agreed with Sanyal’s view.
We Indians don’t have any sensitivity on the issues pertaining names and all on the contrary we relish our past legacy because of the colonial hangover.
— nidhi mishra pandey (@AugNidhi) April 12, 2019
We are an insensitive lot! It wouldn’t strike anyone, I’m sure you can sell a lot of T-shirt’s with this brand name in India!
— Amrendra Kumar (@AMRENsingh) April 12, 2019
— Amit Paranjape (@aparanjape) April 12, 2019
@sanjeevsanyal it’s about time we Indians woke up from the colonial hangover. Thanks for pointing out!
— Praveen Saraf 🇮🇳 (@praveensaraf) April 12, 2019
Real question here is this:
WHAT makes CSKs (Indian)owners indifferent to this?
— Vinayak Pandey (@VinayakPandey) April 12, 2019
Who in their right mind would have thought that it’s a great idea to name their beer bar after an Empire that murdered us and plundered all our resources?
— Smitharoo (@SastaLoha) April 12, 2019
Imagine. Organised outcry against the renaming of Elphinstone Road station to Prabhadevi in Mumbai. That Elphinstone ordered public execution-by-cannon of two Freedom Fighters from Mumbai.
— Arjun Mohan (@ArjunM1412) April 12, 2019
What is the pride in the British Empire ?
You should really redo your brand positioning for india. And @ChennaiIPL you just lost my support !
Millions died in India during the British Empire !
— citizen anurag sehgal (@anuragpalsehgal) April 12, 2019
British Empire is a brand of SNJ Distilleries. In February 2019, just before the start of the IPL, Chennai Super Kings signed a deal with British Empire Glasses and SNJ Distilleries Private Limited.
According to the deal, the CSK players led by MS Dhoni will be wearing SNJ 10000 logo on the leading arm. British Empire appears on the back of the helmet.
British Empire was launched by SNJ Distillers in April 2011 in Tamil Nadu.
The Statesman tried to reach SNJ for a comment. The story will be updated once the company responds.