For as long as I can remember, in every circle, in every country that I’ve lived in, there was always a preference for – or even deference to – lighter-coloured skin. Put it this way, there weren’t any circles where people wanted to have darker skin.
The desire for fairer skin still persists everywhere. Despite health concerns, there is a massive global multibillion-dollar market for skin whitening products – and it’s big in Asia. An Indian woman’s eligibility for marriage can depend on the exact hue of brown skin.