Winning Bizness Desk
Mumbai. The government has tightened the rules for publicists advertising various products including celebrities and sportspersons. Now the promoters of advertisements will also have to provide details of their relationship with the content being promoted. On Friday, the Ministry of Consumer Affairs announced this strictness by issuing new guidelines to prevent misleading advertisements. It stated that the advertisement must reflect the true opinion, belief or experience of its promoter.
Penalty provision under consumer protection law
According to this guideline, the promoter has to refrain from advertisements giving misleading information. Promoters of ads must state their relationship to the content. Failure to do so will result in a fine under the Consumer Protection Act. According to the guidelines, "if there is any relationship between a Promoter, Merchant, Manufacturer or Advertiser that may affect the credibility of the Promotion, such relationship shall be fully disclosed at the time of the Promotion."
Rs 10 lakh fine
The Consumer Ministry has said that for violating these guidelines, a fine of Rs 10 lakh will be imposed in the first instance. Even after this, a penalty of Rs 50 lakh will be imposed for committing the offense.
Guidelines to prevent misleading advertisements
Significantly, the government on Friday issued new guidelines to curb misleading advertisements, which include advertisements targeting children and making free claims to entice consumers. It was also said in the guidelines that due care should be taken before issuing the advertisement. In the new guidelines notified by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, 'surrogate' advertisements have also been banned.