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Advertising Standards Council of India gets legal recognition

By , agencyfaqs! | In Advertising | August 11, 2006
The amendment made in the Cable Television Networks (Amendment) Rules, 2006, now states: "(9) No advertisement which violates the Code for Self-Regulation in Advertising, as adopted by the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), Mumbai, for public exhibition in India, from time to time, shall be carried in the cable service"


The Advertising & #BANNER1 & # Standards Council of India (ASCI), a voluntary and non-profit organisation set up with the objective of ensuring that Indian advertising is sincere, truthful and decent with a sense of social responsibility to the consumer and to the rules of fair competition, has been granted legal recognition by the Government of India.

ASCI has practised self-regulation in advertising in an economical and prompt manner since it was set up in 1985 by a group of advertisers, advertising agencies and the media. However, it lacked the force of legal recognition, but now, its role has been acclaimed by various agencies, including the government.

On August 2, 2006, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting issued a notification in 'The Gazette of India: Extraordinary' {Part II - Sec. 3 (i)}, deeming it necessary for all TV commercials in India to abide by the ASCI code.

The amendment made in the Cable Television Networks (Amendment) Rules, 2006, now states: "No advertisement which violates the Code for Self-Regulation in advertising, as adopted by the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), Mumbai, for public exhibition in India, from time to time, shall be carried in the cable service."

Commenting on the development, Ram Poddar, chairman, ASCI, says, "I would like to appreciate this effort of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting at making the advertising self-regulatory movement in India stronger and more effectual, since it was a very long standing request."

The ASCI encourages people to file complaints against advertisements that are false, misleading, offensive or unfair.The complaint is then assessed by a self-regulating Consumer Complaints Council (CCC), which makes a settlement within a period of four to six weeks. The ASCI has a total of 21 members, 12 from civil society and nine from amongst advertising practitioners.

The ASCI supports some concerned associations such as the Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) to induce TV channels to implement the decisions of its CCC and abide by its code.

Statistics suggest that up to 85 per cent of the complaints registered with the ASCI have been redressed by either withdrawing the concerned ad or by modifying its content appropriately.

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