“What sort of an example is this to children at a school in India which is being built from funds raised by the sale of a T-shirt featuring a topless woman?" That is part of the massive backlash from critics hitting the TBS network after "talent” Chinatsu Wakatsuki, 24, started selling a T-shirt which features her topless.
TBS launched the charity project during its variety program “Akuma no keiyaku ni sain” at the end of January.
Wakatsuki, who traveled through Asia last year while she was taking a break from work commitments, said: “I wondered if I could be of any help to children in poverty, and decided to go topless for charity.”
About 6,000 T-shirts, each costing 2,000 yen, have been sold so far. However, many people have criticized the project, arguing that a school funded by the sale of T-shirts depicting semi-nudity, will attract trouble in Islamic and Hindu countries.
A TBS spokesman told Shukan Post that the money raised would be donated to an educational charity organization in India. However, the network announced on its website that NGO Save The Children has withdrawn from the partnership with the TV station due to recent criticism of the project.
One TBS insider says, “The NGO was reluctant to stay involved in the project since it would affect their normal activities. I think it's very difficult for TBS to find a new partner. It must be costly for a giant TV network to conduct a charity activity.”
Masao Tao, a professor at Aichi Gakuin University, says, “It is inappropriate for TBS to launch such a charity project without making sure that they had a reliable partner to handle disbursement of the funds. It's natural for everyone to think that TBS was just making use of a charity to promote its program. They should disclose what the money raised will be used for as soon as possible to those who bought the T-shirts.”
Following the barrage of criticism and the NGO's withdrawal from the project, a spokesperson for TBS told Shukan Post: “We have assigned a responsible person to oversee the construction of the school (in India).”
TBS, however, suddenly terminated the controversial variety program and Wakatsuki has since moved on to her next promotion. (Translated by Taro Fujimoto)© Japan Today