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Mumbai, May 4th, 2017: In February 2017, ASCI’s Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) upheld complaints against 242 out of 305 advertisements. Out of 242 advertisements against which complaints were upheld, 165 belonged to the Healthcare category, 31 to the Education category, followed by 19 in the Food & Beverages category, 9 in Personal Care Category, and 18 advertisements from other categories.



The CCC found the following claims of 166 advertisements in health care products or services to be either misleading or false or not adequately / scientifically substantiated and hence violating ASCI’s Code. Some of the health care products or services advertisements also contravened provisions of the Drug & Magic Remedies Act and Chapter 1.1 and III.4 of the ASCI Code. Complaints against the following advertisements were UPHELD.


·         Rudralife (Rudrakash Therapy):The advertisement’s claims, “Rudraksha Therapy”,  “Rudraksha for you to achieve Growth, Success and Wellbeing”,  “They provide Rudraksha tested in a ISO 9001-2015 certified laboratory” and “Hold 5 patents on medicinal usages of Rudraksha”, were not proven with authentic supporting data, and are misleading by ambiguity and implication. Also, the advertisement exploits the consumers’ lack of knowledge and is likely to lead to grave or widespread disappointment in the minds of consumers.


·         Slim-N-Health: The advertisement’s claims (in Marathi) as translated into English, “Kavy Lypolysis is a new method due to which we can give proper shape to the body and eliminate obesity by reducing fat permanently”, were not substantiated with any supporting clinical evidence, and are misleading by gross exaggeration regarding permanent fat reduction.  Also, with reference to obesity (“latthapanna”), the advertisement is misleading by implication that the treatment would cure obesity and therefore is in breach of the law as it violated the Drugs & Magic Remedies Act (DMR Act).


·         Ayurwin Pharmaceutical Pvt. Ltd. (Ayurwin Nutri Slim+ Powder): The advertisement’s testimonial claim (in Hindi) as translated into English, “Last year due to obesity, I decided to get slim by using Ayurwin Nutrislim. After using it, for few months I got a beautiful and slim body”, were not substantiated with product efficacy data, and are misleading by exaggeration.  Also, specific to the claims implying cure for obesity (“bhahut motapa”), and the visual showing a slim model, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated the DMR Act.



The CCC found following claims in the advertisements by 31 different advertisers were not substantiated and, thus, violated ASCI Guidelines for Advertising of Educational Institutions. Hence complaints against these advertisements were UPHELD.


·         Centre for Ambition (Pre B4 Pre- Centre for Ambition and Amar Ujala):The advertisement’s claim, “Top three students will get 100% Scholarship & 50 lakh Scholarships for other students”, was not substantiated with authentic supporting data such as evidence of 100% scholarships and 50 lakh scholarships availed by their students.  Furthermore, it was noted that the advertiser is positioning this claim as a future promise without providing any basis as to how such scholarships would be feasible and the claim is misleading by ambiguity and exaggeration. 


·         Bhanwar Rathore Design Studio:The advertisement’s claim, “Highest selection record from BRDS as compared to any coaching institute in Gujarat,” was not substantiated with comparative data versus other similar institutes in the same category or any third party validation or research to prove this claim.  Also, the claims are misleading by exaggeration. 


·         Prakshal Infotect Pvt. Ltd. (Prakshal IT Academy): The advertisement’s claim, “100% Job Guarantee”, was inadequately substantiated with authentic supporting data such as detailed list of students who have been placed through their Institute, their enrolment forms and appointment letters received by the students, nor any independent audit or verification certificate. Also the claims, “Take admission today only & get offer letter of job of Rs.15,000” and “Join prakshal’s any career oriented course & earn from Rs. 1,00,000 to 5,00,000….”, were not substantiated with verifiable supporting data.  The claims are misleading by exaggeration.



·         VLCC Health Care Pvt. Ltd. (Cool sculpting): The advertisement’s claims, “Get rid of stubborn fat”, was inadequately substantiated and is misleading. Also the claim, “Can see difference in just one sitting”, was not substantiated with clinical evidence, and is misleading as the visible difference with CoolSculpting® technology requires multiple sittings along with other restrictions to be followed. Further for the claim, “The most innovative research by VLCC in the area of Body Contouring”, the CCC noted the Advertiser’s response that the Marathi version of the advertisement erroneously claimed “research by VLCC”.


·         The Himalaya Drug Company (Himalaya Tan Removal Orange Peel off Mask): The advertisement’s claim “Removes tan very easily (visual indicates in 15 minutes)” was not adequately substantiated and is misleading by ambiguity and implication. It was noted that the tan removal benefit of the product was not substantiated with either single use or multiple uses of the product.  The visual showing the model removing the peel off mask to reveal fairer skin when seen in conjunction with the visual of a clock indicating 15 minutes time accompanied with the voice over stating tan removal benefit, is likely to mislead consumers regarding the product’s speed of action. 


·         Ronak Group of Companies (L’ACTION Range of Products): The advertisement’s claim, “L’ACTION First time in India from French molecules”, was not substantiated as the ingredients quoted are common cosmetic ingredients. Also the claim, “Immediately helpful in stopping hair fall”, was not substantiated with evidence of product efficacy.  Further, the claims are misleading by exaggeration. 




·         Shukla Dairy Pvt. Ltd. (Shree Gokulam Products-Dahi): The advertisement’s claim (in Gujarati) as translated into English, “If Dahi is made of pure milk then it is only of Shree Gokulam Dairy”, was not substantiated with comparative data versus other similar products in the same category, and is misleading by exaggeration.


·         Torneto Foods International Pvt. Ltd. (Macsy Pani Puri Wafers): The advertisement’s claim, “Healthy Bhi”, was not substantiated and is misleading.  Also, the visual of a “heart” in the advertisement is misleading by implication. 


·         Ankur Chemfood Pvt. Ltd. (Ankur Salt Range): The advertisement’s claim, “Dr. Salt – May help in Regulation of High Blood Pressure & Promoting Physical Activity”, was not substantiated and is misleading by ambiguity as the advertisement is attributing a therapeutic property to salt of “regulating blood pressure”.



·         Future Lifestyle Fashions Ltd. (Urbana): The visual showing the protagonist brushing off the coffee drops from his shirt,  with the voice over saying “No matter what spills just brush it off and watch it disappear”, is misleading by omission of  disclaimer to mention that the anti- spill claim is based on time limit of 20 seconds.


·         Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL Corporate): The advertisement’s claims (in Hindi) as translated into English, “most affordable tariffs” and “fastest broadband”, were not substantiated with comparative data versus other similar service providers in the same category, and are misleading by exaggeration.


·         Dish TV India Limited (Dish TV):The advertisement’s claims, “Watching TV won’t put strain on your eyes anymore!” and “without putting strain on your kid’s eyes”, were not substantiated with credible published scientific evidence and are misleading by exaggeration.  Any child unable to read a black board needs an urgent ophthalmic evaluation and suggesting HD TV as one of the solutions (“Don’t let your child’s eye become weak. Start with changing your TV connection”) is misleading.