Aishwarya Rai
Bollywood actress and internationally-renowned beauty, Aishwarya Rai, is set to attend the 2012 Cannes Film Festival amidst recent controversy regarding the weight she gained while pregnant with her baby daughter and perception of beauty in India. Facebook

Bollywood star actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has been drawing a lot of flak in recent times for the weight gained following her pregnancy and giving birth to her first child. More specifically, she has been heavily criticised for not losing that weight. Her recent wardrobe choices for public events suggests a certain implicit admission of that weight as well as a subtle statement suggesting, quite rightly may we add, she doesn't care too much for the comments.

The actress has been seen wearing a loose-fitting anarkali (a traditional north Indian outfit) with a V-cut neck and heavily accessorising her neck; all signs there has been weight gain, which is a natural fallout of pregnancy. The trend goes back, in the public eye at least, to the visit of American talk show queen Oprah Winfrey to the Bachchans' residence in Mumbai, India, where Winfrey, the new mother and her husband, actor Abhishek Bachchan, were seen leaving the house - Bachchan and Winfrey were both helping Aishwarya down the steps... and she was wearing an anarkali suit.

The actress was spotted wearing a green and blue Manish Malhotra-designed anarkali for the wedding of fellow actors Riteish Deshmukh and Genelia D'Souza, with just a peck of sindoor (a traditional Indian accessory) on her head. She was in an anarkali for the 2012 Femina Awards too.

As the storm of criticism increased, there were rumours Aishwarya would skip attending the 2012 Cannes Film Festival (she is otherwise a regular at the famous event). However, those were dismissed by the actress herself, who, according to an earlier IBTimes UK report, said she would go to France as planned.

The criticism the actress has faced has, fortunately, drawn her supporters to the fore. A second IBTimes UK report quoted several Indian celebrities - actors and designers - as defending Aishwarya, who has been quoted in multiple reports as saying she was enjoying being a mother and did not want to concentrate on anything else.

"I think everyone expects a little too much from Ash. She is human after all. The whole concept of 'Yummy Mummy' is a western phenomenon. It's not Indian or natural," Indian designer Asmita Marwa told Celebs Gather.