‘Entire country taken for a ride’: SC bans Patanjali ads

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday, February 27, put a complete ban on Patanjali Ayurved from advertising its products and cautioned the firm from making any statements to media.

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A bench of justices Hima Kohli and A Amanullah issued a notice to Patanjali Ayurved and its managing director, asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them.

“The entire country is taken for a ride! You wait for two years when the Acts says this (misleading advertisements) is prohibited,” Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah told Additional Solicitor General KM Nataraj, and ordered the Centre to file an affidavit explaining the steps it has taken to ensure compliance.

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Coming down heavily on Patanjali, Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah said, “You had the courage and guts to come up with this advertisement after the order of this Court! And then you come up with this advertisement. Permanent relief, what do you mean by permanent relief? Is it a cure? We are going to pass a very, very strict order.”

The top court issued the band while hearing a plea of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), alleging a smear campaign by Ramdev, founder of Patanjali, against the vaccination drive and modern medicines.

On November 21 last year, the counsel representing the company had assured the apex court that henceforth there shall not be any violation of law, especially relating to advertising or branding of products, and no casual statements claiming medicinal efficacy of Patanjali products or against any system of medicine will be released to the media in any form.

The apex court had then cautioned the company, co-founded by Ramdev and dealing in herbal products, against making “false” and “misleading” claims in advertisements about its medicines as cure of several diseases.

“All such false and misleading advertisements of Patanjali Ayurved have to stop immediately. The Court will take any such infraction very seriously, and the Court will also consider imposing costs to the extent of Rs. 1 crores on every product regarding which a false claim is made that it can “cure” a particular disease,” Justice Amanullah orally said.

(With PTI inputs)


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