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Pepsico gets Delhi HC order to delete fake social media posts on Kurkure

Delhi HC issued an interim order dated on 1 June

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MUMBAI: Kurkure, one of the favourite snacks of Indian kids, has gone through malign campaigns on social media questioning its food quality. Viral posts said that the snack can catch fire easily, implying it contains plastic. Now PepsiCo is fighting back legally to convince consumers that it isn’t true. Recently, the firm also spent Rs 20 million to curb the rumours, according to media reports.

It has secured an interim order from the Delhi High Court (HC) which allows PepsiCo to ask to delete hundreds of such maligning posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. According to media reports, 20,000 Facebook posts, 3,412 Facebook links, 242 YouTube videos, 6 Instagram links, and 562 tweets about Kurkure have been ordered to be deleted. The order came following a petition moved by the company in May this year.

“Fake news suggesting that Kurkure has plastic in it has adversely affected brand’s reputation. Due to such fake and defamatory content circulating on the social media, PepsiCo India was constrained to move the Delhi High Court…this step has been taken to protect brand equity, a matter that we take very seriously at PepsiCo,” the company said as quoted by Quartz.

All the posts harmed brand reputation widely. PepsiCo India was forced to move the Delhi High Court and it issued an interim order on 1 June. The court will next hear the matter on 1 November.

PepsiCo India claimed in a blog that the snack burns not because it contains plastic, but because one of its main ingredients happens to be starch. "Also the vegetable oil that is used as another primary ingredient, expedites the burning. This holds true for all regular snack items like papads, poppadoms, papdis, that contain carbohydrates, proteins and fat," the blog said.

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