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Diwali ads from across the region cover everything from anti-pollution to anti-recession messaging

Across India, Malaysia and Singapore, Deepavali or Diwali brought with it several festive-themed campaigns.

In Singapore, various government bodies created Diwali themed campaigns. These included a film from the Ministry of Environment and Water Works in which a busy father video conferencing with his children makes them aware of his non-ecofriendly lifestyle, leading them to take some corrective measures.

Treasure – a MEWR Deepavali short film

What small changes can we make today for a brighter future tomorrow?#TowardsZeroWaste #SaveSemakau #SayYestoWasteLess

Posted by Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (MEWR) on Wednesday, October 23, 2019

The Singapore Government’s Ministry of Communications and Information created a series of films making people aware of health benefits and upskilling opportunities while riffing on the over the top aesthetic of Indian mythological serials and films.

What could go wrong at a Royal Deepavali celebration?

It’s a right Royal spectacle, when a guest falls ill while feasting on a scrumptious #Deepavali feast hosted by the King! 👑But help is at hand, and the festive spirit prevails. Find out more, as we celebrate this Deepavali with Royal opulence and grandeur! ✨Love this? Watch how the King responds when being ‘Poked’ on Facebook! youtu.be/s_P49WAGEPw

Posted by Gov.sg on Thursday, 17 October 2019

What could go wrong at a Royal Deepavali celebration?

It’s a right Royal spectacle, when a guest falls ill while feasting on a scrumptious #Deepavali feast hosted by the King! 👑But help is at hand, and the festive spirit prevails. Find out more, as we celebrate this Deepavali with Royal opulence and grandeur! ✨Love this? Watch how the King responds when being ‘Poked’ on Facebook! youtu.be/s_P49WAGEPw

Posted by Gov.sg on Thursday, 17 October 2019

Indian indie The Womb created a campaign for gifting portal IGP.com that sought to bring a bit of levity to a festive season that had been preceded by a severe economic slowdown across multiple sectors, in a film in which a father lets the festive spirit override his financial concerns.

Speaking about the campaign, The Womb founding partner Navin Talreja said: “Gifts have always been a source of delight. With the economy being what it is we felt that gifts could play a significant role in uplifting the mood of both the receiver and the giver. The campaign urges every individual to be the person who spreads cheer and joy and uplifts the spirit through gifts.”

Ogilvy India created a commercial for Mission Green India pushing a controversial anti-firework agenda – the site of a huge debate between the people who consider fireworks and smoke they generate, polluting and injurious to health and those who believe any calls for a cutback on fireworks is an attempt to subvert or interfere with cultural traditions. The film features a young child who points out that the pollution from fireworks is the equivalent to smoking 2,000 to 3,000 cigarettes.

Speaking about the campaign which also involved a petition for statutory health warnings on fireworks, Ogilvy India group creative directors Talha Bin Mohsin and Mahesh Parab said: “Mission Green India approached us with a challenge to help make Diwali greener. We came across this study comparing firecrackers and cigarettes, and the numbers in it really scared us. We knew it was something a lot of people don’t really know about, and they should. We realised the best way to achieve this is to have a warning on every pack. With the support of netizens everywhere, we can make mandatory warnings on firecracker packs a reality.”

Considering Diwali is over and the petition did not make even 500 signatures, it is safe to assume the pro-firework brigade won this round.

Autumn Grey India created a campaign for Samsonite celebrating the people who have to work through Diwali ensuring others get a chance to celebrate the festival.

Speaking about the campaign Autumn Grey vice president Bodh Deb said: “When it rained heavily in Mumbai, I was stuck in the middle of nowhere and it was an auto rickshaw driver who really saved us.  “The travel enablers in our country do so much for us especially on festivals and we thought it was the right message from a brand like Samsonite to spread this Diwali.”

Samsonite South Asia director of marketing communications Pradnya Popade said: “The beauty of the campaign is in its insight that while we’re on our way back home to reunite with our family and friends, we often forget the ones that help us reach home during Diwali. Being a travel brand, Samsonite strikes a chord with the audience effortlessly by just thanking these travel enablers and wishing them a Happy Diwali.”

IPG Mediabrands Malaysia and Petronas collaborated on its sixth festive film of the year, with a story of a young man who realises the worth of his austere, stern grandma only after realising the impact she has on the larger community she lives in.

IPG Mediabrands executive creative director Chan Woei Hern said: “This chapter of our year-long narrative explores the little blessings that define where we are as Malaysians. We wanted ‘Thanggam’ to be an open house. We wanted to let audiences into the lives of a fellow Malaysian, by telling a story that was truly cultural, and at the same time universal.”

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