​Vietnamese inspectors summon man for comparing public light display to underwear

The man believes a lighting display on a T-shape gate resembles women’s G-string underwear  

The T-shaped entrance in Can Tho, southern Vietnam, is seen in this cropped photo from the Facebook of Chuong May Man.

A man in Vietnam has been asked to speak with local information inspectors after his implicitly describing a ‘welcome gate’ decorated with a New Year lighting display in a Mekong Delta city as resembling a pair of women’s panties.

Chung Hoang Chuong, the owner of a SIM card store in Can Tho City, posted a photo of the T-shaped structure to his Facebook page, named “Chuong May Man,” on Wednesday night, plus two pictures of G-string underwear.

"If you happen to be in Can Tho, remember that once you go through this [entrance], on your right will be [my store]. Make sure to stop by and buy my SIM cards. They’ll bring you luck,” Chuong wrote in Vietnamese.

The gate in question is located at the intersection of 30 Thang 4 with Quang Trung Streets in Ninh Kieu District, erected as part of a program to decorate major streets in Can Tho with artistic lighting in celebration of the upcoming new year.

While the short caption does not mention anything about the ‘welcome gate’ or explain why its picture was posted alongside a picture of a T-front thong, the Can Tho information department believes that the man was comparing the installation to women’s underwear.

“The inspectorate of the Can Tho Department of Information and Communications invites Mr. Chung Hoang Chuong to [our office on Thursday] to discuss his posting of inaccurate information on the Facebook of Chuong May Man [about the welcome gate]," the inspectors said in a document reviewed by Tuoi Tre News.

The document was signed on Monday by Nguyen Viet Thanh, chief inspector of the Can Tho information department.

Do Hoang Trung, director of the department, also confirmed to Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper that their inspectorate had summoned Chuong.

“Our inspectors wanted to work with him [on Thursday] to clarify the situation after being briefed by local police,” Trung said.

The department head said it is “quite weird” for Chuong to post the panties along with an artistic decoration. “But our department won’t punish him for this,” he reassured.

In the meantime, Chuong has voiced his protest against the request from the department, challenging the inspectorate to clarify “which part of [my Facebook post] is misleading.”

Many Tuoi Tre readers agree that summoning an individual to work with inspectors because of their imagination is inappropriate.

“Panties are not a taboo product, nor are they banned from public advertising, so why does the department have to handle this case?” one reader commented.

Others opted to take the comparison one step further, saying the gate more closely resembles a uterus than a G-string.

This is not the first time artistic lighting in Vietnam has sparked some ‘wild comparisons.’

Other examples include seagull-shaped lights hanging over Le Hong Phong Street in the northern city of Hai Phong, which locals once mocked as ‘flying panties’ last year.

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