ASCI upholds complaints against Balaji Telefilms, Viacom 18, Patanjali, Coca Cola, Facebook,, TOI

MUMBAI: In January 2016, ASCI’s Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) upheld complaints against 51 out of 102 advertisements. Out of 51 advertisements against which complaints were upheld, 13 belonged to the education category, 12 to the food & beverages category, followed by 11 in the healthcare category, 6 in the eCommerce category and 9 advertisements from other categories.

Balaji Telefilms The suggestive scenes in the movie promo showing “two men and women on the beach” are indecent, vulgar and repulsive, which, in the light of generally prevailing standards of decency and proprietary, will cause grave and widespread offence to general public.  

Viacom18 Media Private Limited (Bigg Boss 9) The TV promo advertisement, depicting the protagonists wearing shoes in a temple is likely to cause grave and widespread offence.

Patanjali Ayurved Limited (Youvan Gold Plus): The claims on pack of Youvan Gold Plus, ‘An authentic powder booster Ayurvedic Medicine useful in physical & sexual weakness which improves libido, vigour & vitality, sexual power. Keeps you always healthy, energetic & gives you total satisfaction of married life’, were not substantiated and imply that the product is meant for enhancement of sexual pleasure, which is in breach of the law as it violates the Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.

Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Patanjali Pure Cow’s Ghee): The reference to ‘Keratin’ content in Cow’s milk in the advertisement was found to be an error. The word Keratin was used instead of ‘Carotene’ and the claim ‘Scientific fact: Cow's milk contains Keratin’ was incorrect.

Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Patanjali Atta Noodles): The claim in the advertisement, ‘Oil Free’ was not substantiated and is misleading by implication.

Coca-Cola India Pvt. Ltd. (Coca-Cola Zero): The disclaimer in the advertisement of Coca-Cola Zero was not as per the size stipulated in the ASCI Guidelines for Supers. It was concluded that disclaimer in the advertisement is not clearly legible.  The advertisement contravened the ASCI Guidelines on Supers. 

Facebook India (Facebook Free Basics): The claim in the advertisement, ‘Free Basics is at risk of being banned’ was considered to be misleading by exaggeration. Further, the claim in the advertisement, ‘Through a trial of Free Basics by Facebook, Ganesh learnt new farming techniques that doubled his crop yield’, the farmer’s interview / testimonial is not an adequate substantiation for the claim quantifying doubling of crop yield directly attributable to the Free Basics trial by the farmer. Also, it was not conclusively proven what the crop yields were prior to Ganesh using internet and post using Free Basics trial.  Using an individual testimonial without any claim support data, while reaching out to consumers at large, was considered to be misleading by implication and exaggeration. Also, in the absence of any disclaimer to that effect, the reference to the claim in the advertisement, ‘benefits of Free Internet’ was misleading by ambiguity. The discrepancy between the specification declared on the web-site for AdraxxCrosman Roof Prism Binoculars, and the specification mentioned on the product visual led to the conclusion that the advertisement is misleading.

The Times of India: The claim in the advertisement, ‘Presenting India’s most challenging school quiz.’ was not substantiated by providing comparative data versus other contests of similar nature to support how this quiz is better in the challenge level and the claim of the ‘Most’ challenging quiz.

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