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ASCI pulls up HUL, Ola, Vodafone, others for misleading ads

Friday, May 11, 2018

Advertising sector watchdog ASCI upheld complaints against 193 misleading advertisements in February, including those of Hindustan Unilever (HUL), Himalaya Drug Company, Ola, Vodafone, among others.

The Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) of Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) evaluated 290 complaints in the month.

Amongst the 193 advertisements which it held misleading, 154 belonged to the healthcare category, 18 to the education category, eight to the food and beverages category, two to personal care and 11 were from other categories, ASCI said in a statement yesterday.

From the total of 187 advertisements picked by ASCI's suo moto surveillance, complaints against 163 advertisements were upheld. Of the 103 advertisements complained against by the general public or by industry members, 30 advertisements were upheld by the CCC. The watchdog upheld the complaint against Hindustan Unilever's Lifebuoy Soap's advertisement, stating that it was misleading by ambiguity and implication.

"In the advertisement the celebrity Kajol poses as a doctor, wherein she states 'doctor se suno...Isiliye Silver Lifebuoy' and the last frame of the TVC, shows four people in white coat, giving an impression that doctors have endorsed the product.

"In the absence of any market research data indicating that medical professionals in general recommend the advertised product, such visual presentation was considered to be misleading by ambiguity and implication," ASCI said.
 

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