Rajiv Dube, director, group corporate services, Aditya Birla Management Corporation has been elected chairperson of the board of ASCI (Advertising Standards Council of India). Dube has been a member of the board of governors for five years, during which he provided active support for self regulation in advertising.
G Krishnan, executive director and chief executive officer, TV Today Network has been elected vice-chairperson of the organisation, while Vikram Sakhuja, CEO, South Asia, GroupM Media India has been re-appointed honorary treasurer.
Bennett Coleman & Co.'s Bhaskar Das, Eenadu's I Venkat and Vikram Kaushik from Tata Sky will represent the media on the board, while the advertising agencies will be represented by Subhash Kamath of BBH India, Arvind Sharma of Leo Burnett and Srinivasan Swamy of RK Swamy BBDO.
From allied professions on the board are Dilip Cherian of Perfect Relations, outgoing ASCI chairperson Dhananjay Keskar of IBS, Pranesh Misra of Brandscapes Consultancy and Partha Rakshit of Partha Rakshit Associates.
On his appointment, Dube says, "I feel privileged and thankful to the board of governors of ASCI for providing me this opportunity to lead the movement on self regulation in advertising in the country. It is a humbling experience to be at the forefront of a 25 year old strong and growing initiative, which has come to be looked upon by society and the government alike as the guardian for responsible advertising communication."
During the year 2009-10, the Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) met 12 times and deliberated on complaints against 159 advertisements. Of these, 87 complaints were upheld, while 72 were not upheld. In 71 cases, the ads have been withdrawn or modified appropriately as per the CCC's decisions, resulting in a compliance rate of 82 per cent.
Commenting on the past year, Keskar says, "During 2009-10, ASCI celebrated its Silver Jubilee. It has grown in stature, membership strength and recognition. A sustained public relations campaign has ensured growing awareness of ASCI among the stakeholders and also among the general public. We upgraded our website and made it interactive. This feature and introduction of a toll free number has simplified the process of lodging a complaint about an advertisement with ASCI.
He mentions the support that the organisation has received from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and also the World Federation of Advertisers, who have agreed to fund ASCI over the next three years to increase awareness and carry out market research.