The shape which Aishwarya Rai is in five months after her pregnancy has generated unusual public interest with the Bachchan bahu coming in for some criticism for the "oodles of weight" gained by the actress.
But some celebrites who have been associated with the 38-year-old Bollywood star including Designer Sabyasachi defended her, saying that like any other woman the new mother would definitely take some time to shed pregnancy weight.
The trigger for the reactions came following the publication of some pictures of the former Miss World while emerging out of a party hosted by eminent industrialist Mukesh Ambani in Mumbai last week. Married to Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya gave birth to her first baby, a daughter, on November 16, 2011.
The pictures set off a buzz on the internet and in the social media with articles, videos, blogs and tweets highlighting her "oodles of weight", "double chin" and calling the photos of the beauty queen "shocking".
Some social media writeups sought to suggest that the star is not taking her weight gain seriously. However, some blogs and tweets too have come out in Aishwarya's defence with comments that the focus on her post-pregnancy weight gain was pathetic.
A video compilation of her recent photos attracted comments like: "She is a Bollywood actress and being a part of showbiz it is her duty to look good and fit. Till now she has been praised for her beauty, so it is only fair that she should also be criticized if she is not able to live up to it.
She needs to learn from people like Victoria Beckham who are back to size zero weeks after their delivery! She needs to lose that weight... its been close to 5 months already!"
On the other hand, there are many who believe that five months is not enough time to shed weight and that the comments on her figure are "harsh".
Designer Sabyasachi, who made Aishwarya's costumes for Raavan, said, "Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has just delivered a baby and like any other woman she would definitely take time to put off that weight."
"She's a super celebrity and I think she is doing a commendable job by showing her real side to the media. Earlier, she was criticised for being unreal and plastic," Sabyasachi told PTI.
Aishwarya looked a lot slimmer at the press conference conducted by the Bachchans at their residence, Jalsa, immediately after the baby's arrival. But in recent photographs, Bollywood watchers say it seems as if she is heavier by five to six kilos.
Designer Rina Dhaka says that a new mother gains weight especially when she is taking care of her baby.
"It is very difficult for a woman to shed that weight. I think the media is being very harsh on her. They are deliberately printing those photos which are taken at an angle which makes her look fat or highlights her double chin," Rina said.
Designer Rocky S lashed out at the critics. "Why people are obsessed with Aishwarya's weight. This maternity weight takes time to lose. Being an internatianol celebrity she is not hiding her face, rather she is enjoying her motherhood. She should not be pressurised and she doesn't have to look perfect at this moment."
Even blogs and tweets have come out in Aishwarya's defence.
"Focus on Aishwarya's post preg weight gain pathetic. Glad she's not a celeb bimbo who's wheeled in2 plastic surgery straight frm labour room," said one Twitter user, while another wrote, "Reports in some parts of the media about Aishwarya's weight gain are vile and irresponsible. Let the woman be."
"Utterly gross & sexist commentary in sections of the media on Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. Makes me sick with anger at how we deconstruct women," said another tweet.