Endorsing a popular alcohol brand has put Telugu actor Mahesh Babu in a fix. Two young men from Nalgonda district of Andhra Pradesh have filed a complaint against the actor blaming him for making them alcoholics.
In their complaint with the State Human Rights Commission (SHRC), social activist T Satish Kumar and student leader Banoth Amru Naik, said that they are die-hard fans of the actor and follow all his statements closely. Mahesh Babu, brand ambassador of Royal Stag, had issued a statement saying that alcohol is not injurious health.
The duo said that they believed the actor and spent ₹1,000 daily on alcohol. Blaming the actor further, the petitioners said that alcohol disrupted their lives affecting their health and job prospects as they were unable to attend interviews. Naik even went on to say that his wife left him because of his drinking habit.
The two men alleged that the liquor advert did not carry any warning about the ill-effects of alcohol on health. They are seeking compensation and action against the actor and the liquor brand for misleading vulnerable and gullible youngsters like them. The complainants said that Mahesh Babu should not have endorsed the liquor brand and demanded that the existing advertisements featuring him to be removed.
After reviewing the complaint, the commission has directed Director General of Police Dinesh Reddy to submit a full report by 5 June.
Mahesh Babu is a popular actor in the Telugu film industry. He was ranked fifth in the Times' list of 50 Most Desirable Men in India, in 2011. He is the only south Indian to have made it to the list. Last year, he was the highest earning south Indian actor with an income of over ₹42.25 crore.