Harbhajan Singh sues Mallya's company for an ad featuring Dhoni
India’s top spinner Harbhajan Singh feels that his captain MS Dhoni mocks at him. No, not in Indian dressing room or on cricket field but in a TV commercial of a whiskey brand. An upset Bhajji slapped a legal notice on Vijay Mallya’s United Breweries(UB) for allegedly making a spoof on him in a commercial for McDowell’s No. 1 Platinum soda. The commercial shows Dhoni making fun of Harbhajan’s role in a commercial for rival Pernod Ricard’s Royal Stag. The notice says that such commericals cause disunity and friction within the Indian team.
The Royal Stag advertisement shows Harbhajan deciding not to work in his father’s ball-bearing factory and instead focusing on cricket. In the commercial, Harbhajan suggests viewers to “make it large”. On the other hand, the McDowell’s commercial shows a Bhajji lookalike making ball bearings of large size and asking, “Have I made it large?”. Then he gets slapped by his angry father for being useless. Then Dhoni says, “Zindagi main kuch karna hai to large chodo, kuch alag karo yaar.” McDowell’s attempt to make spoof is clear.
The notice sent by Harbhajan’s legal team asks for unconditional apology and withdrawal of the ad from all TV channels and newspapers. As per media reports, the notice has been sent to Vijay Mallya who owns the UB group, UB Executive Vice Chairman SR Gupte, President & CFO Ravi Nedungadi, Deputy President Harish Bhat and Executive VP (Corporate Affairs) Nandini Verma seeking compensation of Rs one lakh to the cricketer’s family.
Will this affect the personal relationship between Dhoni and Harbhajan? Will it affect the team morale in the upcoming series against England?