New Delhi: Advertising industry watchdog ASCI has upheld 113 complaints about misleading campaigns by companies such as HUL, Godrej, Philips, Snapdeal, Bajaj Allianz, Nissan Motor India and Coca Cola.
According to the Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of ASCI (Advertising Standard Council of India), it received 144 complaints during November and a maximum of 61 complaints of misleading ads were upheld from the personal and healthcare category.
The council concluded that FMCG major Hindustan Unilever Ltd’s advertisement of Lifebuoy violated its code. HUL’s claims that the soap provides “10 x more germ protection” and “10 x more skin care” than any other brand was “not substantiated”, it said.
It also upheld a case against Godrej’s Goodknight, which shows “a child standing near the mosquito vapouriser”, whereas the product’s leaflet includes a precaution that the electrical liquid vaporising machine should be kept away from the reach of children.
“The advertisement features a dangerous practice, manifests a disregard for safety and encourages negligence,” said ASCI.
Online retailer Snapdeal.com, which had advertised on October 6 promising heavy discounts was also pulled up by ASCI stating “while purchasing the products these products were not available and were sold out or the rates were higher while clicking the buy button”.
It added: “The claim of ‘Snapdeal bachaey raho discount offer’ was false and was not substantiated.”
The advertising regulator also pulled up Japanese auto major Nissan for “misleading by ambiguity” as an advertisement of Datsun Go that claimed of “Rs 4000 insurance support”, was not substantiated.
The ASCI also upheld a complaint against radio advertisement of Coca Cola as the mandatory audio, “Coca Cola states that it contains no fruit juice, etc” was “played too fast and was not comprehensible” and contravened ASCI Guidelines.
It also pulled up Philips Electronics for an advertisement of Philips Kerashine Styling Kit, which shows a girl on the rear seat of a car standing up while the vehicle is moving on the road.
“This advertisement encourages a dangerous practice and manifests a disregard for safety and is in violation of the traffic rules,” it said.
ASCI also upheld complaints against advertisements of several educational institutes, including SVKM’s Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, SRIMT and Institute of Technology & Management (ITM) over misleading claims of job placements.
“Complaints against advertisements of these educational institutes were upheld because of unsubstantiated claims that they ‘provide 100 per cent placement/and/or they claim to be the No.1’ in their respective fields,” ASCI said.
A complaint against Cinthol Deodorants which shows alcohol-based deodorants being sprayed on ball pen art (art done by a ball point pen) resulting in the art getting dissolved, was also upheld.
ASCI said: “The advertiser seeks to instill fear in the mind of the consumers as if alcohol based deodorants can melt the human skin. Thus, the advertisement denigrates alcohol based deodorants.”
The regulator also upheld a complaint against Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, which claims to provide value added services such as 24×7 spot assistance, key and lock replacement cover along with the policy, fastest claims servicing through their 24×7 call center.