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Patanjali “False” Ads Case: SC bans on Ramdev’s Patanjali ads

Notice for contempt of court issued to Patanjali and Acharya Balakrishnan.

NEW DELHI-  Supreme Court comes down heavily upon Baba Ramdev and the Central Government for “false and misleading” advertisements by Patanjali. “You have the guts to put out these ads after our orders! You are tempting the court!” SC tells Baba Ramdev. “The entire country is being taken for a ride” and the govt is “sitting with its eyes closed” says SC.

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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.

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“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.

The Court also issued contempt of court notice to Patanjali’s founders Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna for flouting previous orders of the Court by continuing to propagate false and misleading claims regarding their products’ ability to cure diseases.  Balkrishna is the Chief Executive Officer of Patanjali.

The Court also pulled up Central government for not tackling misleading advertisements despite the present petition against the same having been filed in 2022.

The bench was hearing a plea filed by the Indian Medical Association (IMA) alleging a smear campaign by the self-styled yoga guru and his company against the COVID-19 vaccination drive and modern medicine.

During the hearing today, Senior Advocate PS Patwalia for IMA raised concerns about misleading claims made in ads and a press conference held by Ramdev regarding remedies for blood pressure that referred to ‘lies spread by allopathy’.

The Supreme Court had in November threatened to impose costs of ₹1 crore per false claim made in each advertisement for Patanjali Ayurved products that claim to cure diseases.

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In August 2022, the top court had questioned Ramdev on his attempt to discredit allopathy and its practicing doctors during the coronavirus pandemic.

The IMA has initiated multiple criminal proceedings against the Patanjali ambassador.

The IMA stressed that there were multiple instances where such statements had been made by Ramdev, all of which are different causes of action.

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