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How to get Indians to use condoms

india Updated: Jul 26, 2011 13:44 IST
Gursimran Khamba

The other day I went to my local chemist to buy condoms, only to see that he had pushed the display case right to the back of the shop where they'd remain invisible to the naked *no pun intended* eye. Upon asking why, he told me that condoms in the front of the store dissuaded customers from entering and he barely sold 1 condom per every 10 contraceptive pills. This got me thinking. How can manufacturers get more Indians to use condoms? Here's what I came up with.

Flavours: What's the point of having chocolate, strawberry and banana flavoured condoms in the diabetes capital of the world? Experiences of multinational fast food restaurants clearly shows that the only way to succeed and increase nightfootfall is by adapting to local tastes. Thus, condoms must be made available in Chicken Tikka, Paneer Makhni and Murg Achari. They can also cater to regional tastes by introducing rasam flavoured condoms in the south, Cholle Bhature in the north etc.

CondomsFit and finish: While brands have come out with denim based comfort fit condoms to appeal to young people, I find this strategy highly misplaced. When was the last time you saw a teenager wear denims that weren't torn? Is that really a great idea? Unless manufacturers create denim condoms in styles such as the boot cut, with embroidery and faded colours and with hooks to hang a chain on the side, it wouldn't work. A better alternative is, as Gandhiji suggested, khadi. Similarly, dotted condoms only remind young people of their struggles with acne and chicken pox. These must be eradicated. (Ok maybe the last line was just me. Whatever)

Endurance: Condoms with numbing agents to help men last longer need to be banned in India. We are already No. 116 on the list of countries by penis size. You think we want to have sex if that leaves us unable to feel our own penis for the next four hours while we contemplate the lyrics of Linkin Park's Numb?

Though if you really ask me - what we need are mass vasectomies. Our population crisis is also an emergency.