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Indian Teen With Vitiligo Accused Of ‘Cultural Appropriation’ After Wearing Traditional Clothes


Source: Metro

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A 19-year-old Indian teen has reportedly been accused of ‘cultural appropriation’ after wearing traditional Indian clothes due to this skin condition, which makes him look like a Caucasian.

Aviral Chauhan was born in Kanpur, India before moving to Minnesota, USA with his brother, mother and father in 2008. He didn’t know he had a skin condition called Vitiligo, which causes the skin to develop white patches due to a lack of melanin.

At 11 years old, he began noticing a white patch on his eyelid, which very soon spread to his elbows, knees and eventually turned most of his skin white by age 13, reported Metro.

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“It started with a few small white spots, but suddenly the vitiligo went crazy and I would barely recognise myself in pictures from just a few months earlier,” he said.

“There was a time when I didn’t look the same for any two days – my skin would change dramatically overnight.”

“Classmates in high school would ask questions when I didn’t really understand it myself, and I often heard other adults asking my parents about me when they thought I couldn’t hear.”

“I might look white, but my family and culture are still Indian and I try my best to stay true to my identity.”

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Accused of cultural appropriation

At the age of 16, Aviral said he began to embrace how he looked with the help of his friends and family.

He said his family practises a mix of Indian and American cultures and would celebrate Hindu holidays like Diwali.

However, he claims that he has recently been accused of cultural appropriation after he posted photos of himself in traditional Indian clothes on social media.

“It was annoying that people were questioning me and making accusations – it’s literally my own culture,” he said.

“I don’t necessarily go out of my way to tell people I’m Indian, but I would never pretend I’m not because it’s who I am.”


Reply to @slimygrandma69 how many times do you need me to explain this yall? #foryoupage #fyp #vitiligo #vitiligo_boy #SourPatchPrankFund

♬ original sound – Aviral Chauhan

Aviral has had to deal with lots of criticism and bullying while growing up with vitiligo.

He said he would hear adults ask his parents questions like, “is he adopted?” or “is he albino?”

“Or people would say to my parents, “you’re so lucky he’s white”, thinking they were complimenting me because it was seen as desirable to have a child with a lighter skin tone in Indian culture,” he said.

“But my family didn’t see it that way – all it did was disconnect me further from my identity.”

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Despite all the criticism he has received, Aviral said he is greatly supported by his friends and family and feels confident in his own skin.

Don’t judge people based on their appearance, rather get to know them for who they are inside. 


Also read: These Costumes Were Promoted Using Yellow Face & People Are Disgusted

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Source: Metro
Source: Metro
Source: Metro
Source: Metro
Source: Metro

Follow us on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest stories and updates daily.

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