Vogue India cover lands Kendall Jenner in more controversy

NEW DELHI • Barely a month after Kendall Jenner appeared in a Pepsi commercial that drew such a concerted backlash that it was withdrawn, she is again at the centre of controversy.

Vogue India has been blasted online for its decision to feature Jenner, 21, instead of an Indian model on the cover of its 10th anniversary issue.

Expressing outrage on Twitter, one woman wrote: "Vogue India really put Kendall Jenner on their anniversary cover over an actual Indian model. I don't know whether to laugh or cry."

Another called on the magazine to "stop whitewashing everything".

"Love Kendall Jenner but this was an opportunity to showcase some of the talented and accomplished Indian women who are out there making a difference in India and the world in so many diverse disciplines," wrote user Roopa Sachidanand on Vogue India's Instagram post. "A missed opportunity to give a lot of Indian girls and women something empowering to look up to."

Readers have accused the magazine of "whitewashing" and suggested several Indians as alternatives for the cover.
Readers have accused the magazine of "whitewashing" and suggested several Indians as alternatives for the cover. PHOTO: VOGUE INDIA

WRONG CHOICE

A missed opportunity to give a lot of Indian girls and women something empowering to look up to.

TWITTER USER ROOPA SACHIDANAND, on Vogue India featuring US model Kendall Jenner on its 10th anniversary cover.

Many social media users suggested several Indians as alternatives for the cover, including actresses Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone, as well as British model Neelam Gill.

Users also made reference to Vogue Arabia for choosing another American model, Gigi Hadid, as the cover star of its first-ever issue which also came under fire.

The 10th anniversary May issue of Vogue India was guest edited by fashion photographer Mario Testino, who chose Jenner as his leading lady. She poses on the cover and inside pages in what was described as a stunning shoot in the beautiful Samode Palace, outside of Jaipur.

Ms Priya Tanna, Vogue India's editor, was quoted by the Daily Mail as saying that she had always admired Mr Testino's "repertoire".

"To work with him and share his creative vision was nothing short of spectacular. Seeing India through his lens offers a fresh perspective of the familiar," Ms Tanna said.

Earlier this month, Pepsi was lambasted on social media before the soft drink corporation pulled a Jenner advertisement altogether amid jokes and complaints that it foolishly used imagery linked to ongoing social protests to sell soda.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on May 07, 2017, with the headline 'Vogue India cover lands Kendall Jenner in more controversy'. Print Edition | Subscribe