Incredible India: A global campaign
- 'Incredible India' was an international marketing campaign by the Government of India aimed at the promotion of tourism in India in 2002.
- The title was officially promoted by Amitabh Kant, then Joint Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism.
- Indian travel industry analysts and tour operators appreciated the high standards of the campaign and India, soon, emerged as the fastest-growing market for tourism in Asia-Pacific.
Aamir Khan: Brand ambassador with Incredible India
In 2008, Aamir Khan became the brand ambassador for 'Incredible India' with the campaign 'Atithi Devo Bhava'. It was launched to provide tourists with a warmer welcome by educating the locals.
Aamir Khan removed as brand ambassador
- There was a controversy over the removal of Aamir Khan as the face of 'Incredible India' because of his controversial 'intolerant India' comments.
- MoS, Tourism Mahesh Sharma clarified by stating that the actor's remark was a non-issue; it was a contractual matter with advertising agency McCann Worldgroup.
- Sharma further said that the actor's contract ended with the ad agency and so he was removed.
The 'intolerance' remark
Aamir Khan expressed his fear for his family in an extreme climate of intolerance in India at the Ramnath Goenka Awards in 2015. His remarks faced backlash from the entire country.
Amitabh Bachchan emerges as favourite
- The Modi government wanted Bollywood Megastar Amitabh Bachchan as the new face for the 'Incredible India' campaign, after removing Aamir Khan.
- Besides Bachchan, Priyanka Chopra, Deepika Padukone and Akshay Kumar were also said to be in the race for the new brand ambassador.
- Out of them, Amitabh Bachchan unanimously emerged as the top favourite based on the social media posts made by Bollywood stars.
Aamir Khan accused of denting brand India's image
- Amitabh Kant, a pioneer of the 'Incredible !ndia' campaign, accused Aamir Khan of damaging India's image with his unthoughtful remarks.
- His 'intolerant' remark acted as a demotivator to the brand identity of India.
- Kant, as a chief guest at the 36th convocation of National Institute of Design, further stated that the Bollywood actor fell short of executing his responsibility as the brand ambassador.
Who is Amitabh Kant?
Amitabh Kant is a senior bureaucrat and the secretary of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, GoI. He was also the pioneer and one of the key drivers of the 'Incredible India' campaign during its launch in 2002.
Incredible India: Bachchan, PC chosen as brand ambassadors
- Bollywood actors Priyanka Chopra and Amitabh Bachchan have been declared as the brand ambassadors for the 'Incredible India' campaign after a month-long speculation.
- The actors were directly appointed by the Government for three years and can not charge any amount for their endorsements.
- Bachchan was initially seen as the face of Gujarat Tourism and Chopra was a part of the 'Swachh Bharat' campaign.
Incredible India brand ambassador undecided: Union Minister
- The reports doing the rounds that Bollywood actors Priyanka Chopra and Amitabh Bachchan had been appointed as the new brand ambassadors of the 'Incredible India' campaign were dismissed by the Union Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma.
- He said the government is "yet to decide" on a brand ambassador for the campaign.
- He further added that the probable names were merely media's speculation.
Bachchan denies being approached for 'Incredible India'
- Clarifying the speculation on the 'Incredible India' ambassador selection, Amitabh Bachchan stated that he was 'not formally approached' for the task.
- His clarification comes after rumors surfaced, that his candidature was withheld after his name figured on the Panama Papers list.
- Anonymous sources in the Tourism Ministry allegedly told reporters that "his name would be considered only if he comes clean on the issue."