Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) Health-Related Decisions and Recommendations, May 2016


January 24, 2017

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) is a voluntary, self-regulatory organization for India’s advertising industry. The council and its Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) evaluate complaints from consumers and industry which assert that advertisements are false, misleading, indecent, illegal, leading to unsafe practices, and/or or unfair to competition, and therefore violate the ASCI Code for Self-Regulation in Advertising. In May 2016, the complaints that were upheld against health-related claims included:

  • Aldine Ventures Pvt. Ltd. (Aldine CA): The advertisement’s claim, "study from India’s best final faculty" and “Study from India’s best CPT faculty,” were false and misleading. The advertisement contravened Guidelines for Advertising of Educational Institutions and Programs.
  • Ayurwin Pharmaceutical Pvt. Ltd. (Ayurwin Nutrigain+ Powder and Capsules): The advertisement’s claim, “This Summer Along With Strong Body, Keep Your Body Cool” and "Look Strong & Fit, Gain Your Body Weight,” were not substantiated and are misleading.
  • Chaturbhuj Company (Japani M & F): In the advertisement the claim (in Hindi), “Shokin log bhi istemal karke asar dekhe,” was not substantiated and is misleading by implication. Also, the claims related to the product benefit read in conjunction with the advertisement visual implies that the product is meant for enhancement of sexual pleasure, which is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Chemical Resources (Chemforce Capsules): The advertisement’s claim, “one capsule daily” was addressed to all men. The product is meant for “treatment of symptomatic hypogonadism” as a “testosterone booster” and the safety of the product for its long term use was not substantiated. The advertisement was misleading by ambiguity and omission and encouraged negligence.
  • Clinic Dermatech (Weight Loss by Cryosculpting): The advertisement’s claim, “Eliminate stubborn fat in the coolest possible way – Cryosculpting” was not substantiated and was misleading by gross exaggeration. The reference to “No Special diet” and “No supplements” was considered to be misleading by ambiguity as the procedure alone would not provide a patient with the benefit of fat elimination.
  • Dr Batra’s Homepathy Clinic (Largest Hair Treatment Clinic): The advertisement’s claims, “World’s largest hair treatment clinic” and “Over seven lakh hair loss patients treated successfully,” were not substantiated and are misleading.
  • Dr. Batra’s Positive Health Clinic Pvt Ltd – (Hair Loss Treatment): The advertisement’s claims, “41% of men with full heads of hair were selected for job interviews as compared to only 27% of balding men” and “56% of women think that men with hair loss look at least 5 years older than their actual age,” were not substantiated and are misleading.
  • Dr. Bhavana Shah Fitness Highway (Fat Freeze): The advertisement’s claims, “8 Session of Tummy Tuck U-Lipo Rs. 20,000/-* FREE*,” “Fat Freeze More Advanced than U-Lipo” and “No Diet,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, the visual showing the images of before and after the treatment were considered to be misleading.
  • Dr P K Jain Clinic: The claims in the advertisement (in Hindi) as translated into English, “World’s No.1 TOP Ranking Sexologist,” “One and Only Experienced Highly Qualified Doctor,” “Masculine weakness, Early Ejaculation, Sperm faltering, Small and Extenuation organs and one and only secret disease specialist who is honoured with award by world level scientist research for successful treatment of other Venereal disease,” “Honoured by best sex clinic of the millennium award” and “Special successful Treatment for sexual problems like Sexual debility, Lack of sex, masculine weakness/Sexual Weakness and Undeveloped male organs,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also specific to the claims related to successful treatment of sexual problems, and the advertisement visual implying enhancement of sexual pleasure, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Dynamic Memory Pvt. Ltd. (Dr. Biswaroop): The advertisement’s claim, ‘Diabetes Type I & II cure in 72 Hrs’ is false and is grossly misleading. Also, with reference to the advertisement claiming cure of diabetes, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Emami Limited (Navratna Tel): In the advertisement, the claimed benefit of efficacy in two minutes i.e., “Sirf Do Minute Navratna Tail Ki Thandi Maalish Dinbhar Ke Sardard, Tension, Thakaan Ko Jhat Se Bhagaye” and “2 min mai tension bhagaye, thakaan mithaye, sardard bhagaye, Anindra se chutkara dilaye,” were not adequately substantiated and were misleading by ambiguity.
  • GAIA Range of Health Foods and Nutritional Supplements: The advertisement’s claim, “GAIA’s Range of Health Foods and Nutritional Supplements helps you manage your weight more effectively,” was not substantiated with any scientific evidence and is misleading.
  • Herbal Clinic: The advertisement’s claims, “Sexual Weakness? Don’t be disappointed” and “Treats Nightfall, Premature Ejaculation, and Impotence” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, specific to the claims implying treatment for impotence and sexual problems, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (Fair & lovely Ayurvedic Care): In the advertisement the claims in Marathi (when translated into English), “Power packed with natural anti-oxidants that removes scars” and “A natural astringent that calms the skin and provides freedom,” were not substantiated and were misleading.
  • Lifezen Healthcare Pvt. Ltd. (Eye Spa Eye Drops): The advertisement’s claim, “No. 1 Formula Recommended By Eye Specialists” was not substantiated with evidence that CMC formula is the most recommended formula and the claim is misleading by ambiguity and implication that the claim holds for the advertiser’s product.
  • Lotus Herbals Limited (Lotus Safe Sun Whitening Plus): The advertisement’s claim, “SPF 40, PA+++give complete sun protection from UVA /UVB rays,” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Naturoveda Health World (Zilaxo): The advertisement’s claims, “The fact that ‘Zilaxo Advanced Pain Solution’ has been awarded by the Union Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptulla in 2015 as well as by the Union Science & Technology and ex-Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan in 2016 has proved once again that its treatment procedure is very effective, completely safe and 100% scientific” and “Awarded as "The Most Promising Brand Equipped With Internationally Acclaimed Technologies,” were not substantiated with authentic supporting data and are misleading.
  • Naturoveda Health World: The advertisement’s claims, “Piles, Fissure and Fistula can be eradicated without surgery.” and “The unique combination of Fundamentals of Ayurveda, Unani and Scientific Yoga can eradicate such anorectal diseases without surgery,” were not substantiated and were misleading by exaggeration. Further, the claim of “Winner of Hakim Ajmal Khan Global Award for the Best Ayurvedic & Unani Clinic” was not adequately substantiated with authentic support data and the year of the award was also not mentioned in the advertisement. Specific to the claim implying cure of Piles and fistula (conditions referred in Schedule J of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act) the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Cosmetics Rule 106.
  • Nisha Herbal Products (Safrogel Cream): The advertisement’s claim (in Marathi), “Gori Gori Laakhat Bhaari, Nisha Herbal cha Safrogel Gori panaacha maha mantra” conveys that fair complexion is an enabler to become popular and derides people with darker complexion by implication. The advertisement also contravened ASCI’s Guidelines of Advertising for Skin Lightening or Fairness Improvement Products (“Advertising should not communicate any discrimination as a result of skin colour.”).
  • Olivet Pharma Pvt. Ltd. (Ayusya Superspeciality Treatment Centre): The advertisement’s claim, “Get Freedom from Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Om Sai Ayurveda India Limited (Om Sai Ayurveda’s Range of OTC Products): The claims in the advertisement (in Hindi) as translated into English, “Reduce Sugar or Else Get Your Money Back*” and “Over the past many years Om Sai Ayurveda India Limited is doing a deep research on Ayurveda. It is an ISO 9001: 2008 certified company that has found out a unique treatment that helps maintain the blood sugar level,” were not substantiated and are misleading.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Limited (Patanjali Kesh Kanti Reetha Hair Cleanser): The advertisement’s claim, “strengthens roots” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Limited (Patanjali Kesh Kanti Shikakai Hair Cleanser): The advertisement’s claim, “Reduces hair fall, graying and itchy scalp” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Divya Swasari Pravahi): The advertisement’s claims, “Thousands of banned medicines are being sold in the market. The harmful results of these bad chemicals are surfacing now. Thousands of pharmaceutical companies are paying crores of rupees as a fine for this act. Besides this, health of people is getting affected by these chemicals,” were factually incorrect and not substantiated with authentic supporting data and are misleading. Also, the claims are denigrating competition and puts the entire allopathic cough and cold medicine category in bad light. Further, the claim regarding, Divya Pharmacy Ayurvedic medicines i.e. “These medicines have 0% side effects and 100% results,” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Divya Swasari Pravahi): The advertisement’s claims, “Their medicine has 0% side effect and 100% effective” and “They have used this product for more than 20 years on ‘LACS and CRORES’ of people” were not substantiated and are misleading by exaggeration.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Obesity-Free Information Camp – Divya Mukta Vati & Divya Madhunashini Vati): The advertisement’s claim, “Conducting Trials On Over 1 Cr People,” "It Gives Strength To Pancreas & Naturally Controls Diabetes” and “It Also Controls The Most Dangerous Side Effects Of Diabetes Like Neuropathy, Nephropathy & Retinopathy,” were not substantiated and are misleading by exaggeration.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Patanjali Dant Kanti): The advertisement’s claims, “It is trusted brands of crores of countrymen,” “herbal toothpaste,” “long duration protection” and “full profit of this product goes to educational charity” were not adequately substantiated and are misleading by ambiguity and exaggeration.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Patanjali Jeera Biscuit): The advertisement’s claim, “100 percent Atta, cholesterol free, low Sodium salt,” is not substantiated and is misleading by ambiguity as the advertiser did not provide any quantitative declaration of the various ingredients used in the manufacturing of the product. Further, the advertisement claims, “Benefits of Jeera”. It was acknowledged that Jeera (cumin) has benefits as a single ingredient, but its presence in the product was not substantiated to signify its quantity in the product. Also presentation of these claims on the packaging material (rich in iron Increase haemoglobin and help in acidity and other stomach related problems) was misleading by implication that the product Jeera biscuit would provide those benefits.
  • Patanjali Ayurved Ltd. (Patanjali Kesh Kanti Natural Hair Cleanser): The advertisement’s claim of alleviating, “hair fall, hair breakage and dryness” was not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Pushkara Herbals (Pushkara Bone & Joint Capsules): The advertisement’s claim, “Doctor’s Trusted Brand” was not substantiated with any data and is misleading.
  • Rajnish Hot Deals Pvt. Ltd. (Play Win Plus Capsule): In the advertisement the claim (in Hindi) as translated into English, “Increase your Power, Strength, Extra Timing and Energy” was not substantiated with evidence of product efficacy and was misleading by implication . Also, the claims, “Secret to a Happy Married Life,” “one tablet one hour prior,” “Immediate effect” and “For powerful stamina” read in conjunction with the advertisement visual and pack visual of a couple implies that the product is meant for enhancement of sexual pleasure, which is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Rajnish Hot Deals Pvt. Ltd.: In the advertisement the product claims, “Effect starts from first day” with evidence of product efficacy and the claims are misleading by implication. Also, the claims, "If you want to make your life happy! Then make your wife happy!!!,” “. . . This badly affects their love life as well. They are unable to enjoy their love life.,” “Play Win Capsules are effective for this kind of problems. Which can help you gain your power, stamina, strength” and “By massage on weak nerves with few drops of Play Win oil, it will strengthen the vital organs of the body. This will ensure happy and satisfied married life,” read in conjunction with the advertisement’s visual and pack visual indicates that the product is meant for enhancement of sexual pleasure, which is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Ratnasagar Herbals Pvt. Ltd. (Joy Pure Aloe Multi Benefit Body Lotion): The advertisement’s claim, “anti-ageing,” “anti-pollutant” and “UV protection” were not substantiated and were misleading by exaggeration.
  • Razorbill (Razor Slim Ayurvedic Instant Slimming Capsule): The advertisement’s claim, "Order Razor Slim for Instant Fat Loss Today” was not substantiated and is grossly misleading by exaggeration.
  • Razorbill (Razor Slim Ayurvedic Instant Slimming Capsules): The advertisement’s claims, “The most exciting fastest fat burner of India is here. The New Razorslim an Ayurvedic fat buster has shaped millions of people across the country,” “Razorslim has specifically chosen highly effective herbs which help reducing weight,” “Razorslim has two types of capsules. No1 capsules help in removing fat from the body and No2 capsules help in evacuating the removed fat through excretory system,” “Used by Millions to Lose Weight Fast” and “Clinically Proven,” were not substantiated and are grossly misleading.
  • Razorbill (Razorslim1): The advertisement’s claim, “Razorslim – complete Ayurvedic way of losing fat most effectively without any side effect,” was not substantiated with clinical evidence or proof of efficacy for the product and is misleading. The visual showing the images of before and after the treatment were considered to be misleading.
  • Razorbill (Spondireliv): The advertisement’s claim, “A complete cure of Spondylitis with a unique herbal formula,” was not substantiated with clinical evidence or proof of efficacy for the product and is misleading. Also, specific to the claim related to cure of Spondylitis, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated Schedule J of The Drugs and Cosmetic Act, 1940 and Rules, 1945.
  • Razorbill’s (Razor Slim Capsules): The advertisement’s claims, “Razor slim is one stop solution for all the fat related problems of the patients. It reduces bad cholesterol and detoxifies the body. Razor slim has specifically chosen highly effective herbs which help reducing weight.,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, the visual showing the images of before and after the treatment were considered to be misleading.
  • Salzpa’s – HSR (Salt Room Therapy) (100% Natural Drugless Therapy from Europe): The advertisement’s headline states, “Breathe a new life with the founders of Salt Room Therapy (Under the guidance of Prof. Alina V. Chervinskaya, M.D. Ph.D),” thereby giving an impression that the treatment would be with active participation from Dr Alina whereas this is not the case. It was concluded that the claim was not substantiated and is misleading by ambiguity.

  • Shree Maruti Herbals Pvt. Ltd. (Stay On Power Oil): The advertisement’s claims, “Helps rejuvenate and strengthens weak nerves” and “Massage daily and experience the height of pleasure,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, the claims read in conjunction with the pack visual, imply that the product is meant for enhancement of sexual pleasure, which is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Speed Height Capsule: The claims in the advertisement (in Gujarati) as translated into English, “Good height makes career bright,” “Speed Height™ Capsule – It can be beneficial for me also,” “Effective Ayurvedic medicine” and “Helps in physical development,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, specific to the claims implying increase in height, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.
  • Sri Sri Ayurveda Trust (Ojasvita Health Drink): The advertisement’s claim, “Ojasvita’s 7 Power Herbs support your daily mental fitness needs” is not substantiated and is misleading.
  • Vaidban Ayurved Bhawan’s (Kamri Slimming Green Tea): The advertisement’s claim, “Kamri Slimming Green Tea – Keeps you slim and smart always,” was not substantiated and is misleading by exaggeration
  • Vee Care Marketing World Pvt. Ltd. (Vee Care Ayurveda): The claims in the advertisement (in Hindi) as translated into English, “Increase your height otherwise* get your money back” and “This Medicine is helpful in increasing the Height. And it has No Side Effects,” were not substantiated and are misleading. Also, specific to the claims related to increase in height, the advertisement is in breach of the law as it violated The Drugs & Magic Remedies Act.