Mumbai: Like many other brands, Shah Rukh Khan is the face of Byju’s, the learning app. Now that Byju’s has temporarily halted all ads featuring the Bollywood superstar following the arrest of his son Aryan Khan in the cruise ship drugs bust case, the question doing the rounds is – was it a knee-jerk reaction? Will it hurt Byju’s more?
More so as the decision seems to be based on stinging criticism of Byju’s by social media users, who pulled up the edtech company for being linked with Shah Rukh despite his young son being investigated by Narcotics Control Bureau in a drugs case. Some of the netizens questioned why Shah Rukh, who can’t even teach his own child to act lawfully.
Television actor Nakuul Mehta was among those who doesn’t agree with Byju’s step.
The Bade Achhe Lagte Hain 2 actor took a jibe at Byju’s on Sunday with a sarcastic tweet.
“Being replaced by the serving minister who’s (sic) son is arrested for murder charges! Class, Byju’s,” Nakuul wrote.
Also raising his voice against Byju’s was Rohit Ohri, group chairman at creative ad agency FCB India. He felt that the edtech company could be hurting its own interest by dropping Shah Rukh like a hot potato.
“Byju’s has benefited immensely from its association with SRK. Shah Rukh Khan’s association with the edtech brand has been so intrinsic and so deep, that even if Byju’s is pausing the advertising for now, it will be very difficult for the brand to delink itself from SRK,” Ohri stated.
Shah Rukh also endorses major brands like Hyundai, LG, Dubai Tourism, ICICI Bank, Reliance Jio.
Aryan and seven others were arrested after NCB raided a rave party on a cruise ship off Mumbai on the night of October 2. The agency has seized 5 gm of mephedrone, 21 gm charas, 22 pills of MDMA and 13 gm of cocaine along with cash around Rs 1.3 lakh.
Aryan and the others have been sent to 14-day judicial custody. His petition for interim bail will come up for hearing on Monday.
High-profile Bollywood celebrities like Salman Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Farah Khan, Pooja Bhatt and Raveena Tandon have extended their support to Shah Rukh and Gauri Khan.