Skin So White, It is To Die For
These tragic deaths can be linked to a common ideology in this South Asian nation that the whiteness of skin equates to beauty.
The skin complexion of Indians vary widely, with some Indians being fair from birth, while others have an equally dark, natural skin tone. The latter are often bullied in school, in homes, and even in workplaces. Comparison with siblings who may have a slightly lighter skin complexion is exceedingly common, too.
In matrimonial columns, the skin tone of the bride is often overly emphasized as being white or fair, or at least wheat-ish or light brown. The complex is further enforced by an overemphasis of popular media of actors and actresses with fair complexions.
While media rules state that TV commercials or shows cannot directly state that darker complexions are ugly, there are no guidelines for not promoting whiteness as a standard of physical beauty. As a result, many Indians are obsessed with being whiter or fairer, and severe discriminatory mindsets have become commonplace everywhere in society.