Girl shamed for not being the ‘right size’ at Mumbai designer store

At Kalki Fashion, the sales representative asked the woman to 'go to the gym'.

By: Express Web Desk | Updated: December 9, 2015 7:04 pm
Source: Instagram/ Facebook- Mona Joshi Source: Instagram/ Facebook- Mona Joshi

What if you don’t match the stereotype “perfect mannequin” figure? Does that give someone the licence to shame you for not being fit for the ‘fashionista’ community?

The answer is a loud NO.

But that is exactly what happened to Mumbai resident Mona Joshi at Kalki Fashion, a clothes retailer. When Joshi went to the said store to buy a ghaghra (skirt) and didn’t find anything she liked, she asked the sales representative if anything was available in her size. Pat came the reply, “Óf course not”. This is both shocking and worrisome as it reflects the deep-rooted prejudice against women who don’t conform to the ‘model’ norm. An affronted Joshi asked the man where should women her size shop from, to which, he said, ‘Go to the gym’. Angry — and justifiably so — Joshi stomped out of the store that very instant.

“The moment he made that remark, I was in complete shock for a while. I felt ashamed for some reason, like I made a mistake by asking him for a garment in my size. In that moment I felt like I deserved that comment,” Joshi told BuzzFeed.

Upset at being treated in such an ungraceful manner, Joshi’s friend Shreshth Poddar — who had accompanied her to the store and was a witness to the salesman’s atrocious behaviour — shot an email to the store owner narrating the incident and demanding an apology from the salesperson. How can anyone else have the right “to tell them that they should go to the gym?” read Poddar’s email, screenshots of which, he posted on his Facebook page.

Source: Facebook/ Shreshth Poddar Source: Facebook/ Shreshth Poddar Source: Facebook/ Shreshth Poddar Source: Facebook/ Shreshth Poddar

“The purpose is NOT to defame a brand. The owner cannot be held responsible for a momentary action of an employee. It is to share awareness about fat shaming and much-needed politeness and basic decency among people,” Poddar told BuzzFeed.

They shared the incident with their friends who flooded the store’s Facebook page with messages reminding them of the ruthless behaviour of their sales representative.

Responding to the barrage of complaints, the store director apologised on behalf of his employee on Facebook and informed them that the sales representative’s contract had been terminated. “We echo your sentiments and are disturbed that such an incident occurred at our store. We follow a strict code of conduct and do not condone or tolerate misbehavior and disrespect. Also, We would like to invite you to our store again and will have an appointment fixed with our head designer,” he wrote.

Source: Facebook Source: Facebook

This disturbing incident is a reminder of how stereotypes regarding the female body are so deeply set in the social psyche.

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  1. R
    Rajesh
    Dec 9, 2015 at 1:37 pm
    Why is this on a newspaper. How low have the pressutes falled where they take any garbage and publish it as news.
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    1. D
      disgusted
      Dec 9, 2015 at 3:18 pm
      Please spare us from such tabloid news!
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      1. Santano Fernandes
        Dec 10, 2015 at 12:26 pm
        Most of this people making drama and mountain out of mole hill are people who want free gifts , I know this being hotelier, there will rich guest coming to the five star hotels and keep on complaining on small things till a free of offer of Dinner voucher or free Voucher spa they get. Nothing to be taken to big or serious, world is too short and nobody knows if tomorrow will ever come, so just sit and relax and the reporter also should not big mountain out of not even a mole hill
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        1. K
          Keerthi Menon
          Dec 10, 2015 at 4:57 am
          This is too bad that people of the society spit out such comments on Women!
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          1. R
            Rajesh Rao
            Dec 9, 2015 at 9:59 pm
            Well, owner is responsible for his employees action, so long as they work for him. See, if you can take legal action on the chain
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