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No Fear No Favour

Foreign food chains under fire: #BoycottKFC trends for anti-India rant.

Fast food restaurant chain KFC has been dragged into a controversy after the brand’s Pakistan handle uploaded a post on Facebook depicting ‘solidarity’ with Kashmir.

The February 5 post has since been deleted but social media users have been sharing screenshots of it, demanding an apology from the company as #BoycottKFC began to trend on Twitter.

The post read: “You never left our thoughts and we hope that the coming years bring peace to you!”. The image has “KASHMIR BELONGS TO THE KASHMIRIS” written in bold red letters.

Following an online uproar, KFC India issued an apology on Monday evening. “We deeply apologize for a post that was published on some KFC  social media channels outside the country. We honour and respect India, and remain steadfast in our commitment to serving all Indians with pride,” read a statement issued by the company.

Twitter users, however, were quick to point out that this isn’t the first time that KFC’s Pakistan handle expressed its solidarity over Kashmir. Their social media teams had shared a similar message on February 5, 2021 — a day the neighbouring country observes as Kashmir Day.

KFC is not the only company that has found itself in hot waters due to its social media posts on Kashmir. South Korean carmaker Hyundai  had to issue a clarification on Sunday after its Pakistan  handle put up a post remembering “sacrifices of Kashmiri brothers” on February 5.The clarification arrived after a huge backlash online and calls for boycott of its cars in the country, long a significant market.

In its statement on February 6, the company said “Hyundai Motor India has been committed to the Indian market for more than 25 years now and we stand firmly for our ethos of respecting nationalism.”Apart from this, the automotive company said, “The unsolicited social media post linking Hyundai Motor India is offending or unparalleled commitment and service to this great country. India is the second home to the Hyundai brand we have a zero-tolerance policy towards insensitive communication and strongly condemn any such view.”

By line : Divya Thearia

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