ASCI upholds complaints against 40 ads in April

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | June 25, 2013
Health & Personal Care and Education were the main categories that continued to make misleading claims and came under the scanner of the CCC in April, 2013.

The Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) of the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has upheld complaints against 40 ads out of 54 ads in April.


Health & Personal Care and Education were the main categories that continued to make misleading claims and come under the scanner of the CCC. The sector leads with 52 per cent (148 out of 287) complaints upheld against ads in the first four months of 2013.

ASCI for the first time received and upheld a complaint against an SMS ad sent out by Hardcastle Restaurants. Hardcastle Restaurants' McDonald's promotional SMS showed 'McVeggie or McChicken FREE on order of Rs 200 above with McDonald's'.

According to the complaint, the SMS advertisement that McDonald's sent was totally misleading as there was no mention that it applied only for Home Delivery. The CCC concluded that the advertisement-SMS was misleading by omission. It thus contravened Chapter I.4 of the code. The complaint was upheld.

The CCC found claims in Health & Personal Care products or service ads released in (newspapers) the press to be either misleading, false or not adequately/scientifically substantiated and hence violated Chapter I of the ASCI code. Some of the Health Care products or services ads also contravened the provisions of the Drug & Magic Remedies Act. Complaints against the following ads therefore were upheld. The brands, ads of which were upheld include Naaz India Company, Sagar Dispensary, Anant Clinic, GM Pharmacy, Kamboj Foods, Lotus Granges (India), KPR Herbals, Raj Power Capsules, R K Herbals Pharmacy, Stammering Cure Centre, Gogaji Hair & Skin Care Centre and Musli Sakthi Herbals.

Sarkar Dispensary's advertisement claimed that it 'is the Best Ayurvedic clinic of 2011' while NCP Herbal's Sovolin Ayurvedic's advertisement claimed that it 'gives soft, smooth and silky skin with the touch of Sovolin which other cannot give'. All these complaints were upheld.

In the education sector, the CCC found claims in print ads by 12 different advertisers were not substantiated, thus violating the ASCI guidelines for advertising of educational institutions and hence, the complaints against the ads were upheld. The ads included were of brands like Lakhani Academy, Indian Institute of Learning & Advanced Development, Maharishi Basant Tutorials, Alchemist, Mukils English Academy, IT'S THE Education Group, Sai National Intuition of Technology (SNIT) and Tulip India Fastrack Institute of Technology and Swami Vivekanand Institute of Technology.

In the 'MBA 2013 Admission Notice' print advertisement, Amity University shows its rankings given by 'Business Today' and 'The Economic Times' without providing the details of the years of ranking, which is misleading.

In the fast moving consumer goods category, Ganesh Atta's print advertisement claimed that they are 'processed through reverse osmosis, Ganesh bajra Atta and Ganesh Makkai Atta, prevent several health hazards and give you more nutritious and delicious rotis'. In the absence of comments from the advertiser, the CCC concluded that the claims mentioned in the advertisement were not substantiated. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.1 of the Code. The complaint was upheld.

In the consumer durables category, Aqua Pure Guard Water Purifier's print advertisement claimed that it is 'World's No.1 water purifier'. In the absence of comparative data from the advertiser, the CCC concluded that the claim, 'World's No.1 water purifier' was not substantiated. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.1 of the Code. The complaint was upheld.

During the month of April, the CCC also received complaints against 11 other advertisements. The complaints were received against the advertisements of Aviva Life Insurance Company India, Euro Fashion Inners International - Euro Briefs, Great Eastern Management School - GEMS B School, Hindustan Unilever - Comfort 1 Rinse Fabric Conditioner, Keya Seth's Ayurvedic Solution - Keya Seth's Umbrella Sunscreen Lotion, Kaleesuwari Refinery - Gold Winner Sunflower Oil, Mankind Pharma -Manforce Condom, McNROE Consumer Products Wild Stone Deodorant, Piaggio Vehicles - Vespa, Times Business Solutions -, and United Spirits - Kingfisher. However, as these advertisements did not contravene ASCI's codes or guidelines, the complaints were not upheld.

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