NEW DELHI: A protest was staged by a group of Jharkhand locals outside the DLF Promenade Mall here against international popstar Rihanna's cosmetic brand, Fenty Beauty. The agitators alleged that the brand, which is marketed by a French multinational Sephora, is involved in child abuse since it uses mica, which is mined in Jharkhand and involves lakhs of children to extract it.
The protesters claimed that they belonged to two voluntary organisation which work for the welfare of children, especially child labour. Seva Sanskar Foundation chairman Javed Malik said that they will submit a memorandum to the National Commission For Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) requesting action on the beauty line. "Such brands like Rihanna's are making their childhood ugly just to mint money through make others look attractive," he said.
Malik was also displeased with Rihanna's tweet and called it an anti-national act.
Sanjay Mishra from the Jharkhand Bal Swecchik Manch said: "Such multinationals are snatching away childhood of Jharkhand children." Meanwhile, the police arrived on the spot and asked the participants to produce a permission to protest which they failed to furnish.
However, they were let off with a warning. "Section 144 is in force in which assembly of more than four people is prohibited. Besides, they should have informed the police before holding sny such assembly. We don't have any correspondence from them," said ASI Surendar Kumar of Vasant Kunj Police Station.
Rihanna's brand is under the scanner of the NCPCR for allegedly using mica from Indian mines where child labourers, who work in dire conditions. The NCPCR has received a complaint from the Legal Rights Observatory (LRO) NGO against the beauty brand, seeking an investigation into mica sourcing.
The complaint came after Rihanna made news when she tweeted about farmers' protest in India. A few other international personalities such as climate change activist Greta Thunberg also expressed support for the farmers' protests.