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Ad watchdog upholds complaints against 82 campaigns

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Advertising sector watchdog ASCI has upheld complaints against 82 "misleading" print and TV ad campaigns in April, including those by Hindustan Unilever, Marico, Tata Sky, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank.

According to the Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of Advertising Standard Council of India (ASCI), campaigns in health and personal care category continued to lead with 44 violations.

The regulator received 46 complaints against health and personal care category and 44 of them were upheld.

The ASCI has upheld compliant against HUL ad of deodorant Axe Extra Strong.

"The 'NSFW Make Them Strip' video shows women turning into nymphomaniacs after smelling the deodorant. The TVC shows indecent depiction of women which is likely in the light of generally prevailing standards of decency to cause grave or widespread offence," the regulator said.

It also found an ad of Tata Sky violating the guidelines. The DTH operator in an ad shows a male actor dressed in a blue T-shirt making fun of beggars who have leprosy and are visually challenged, the advertising regulator said.

"The ad derides people who have leprosy and people who are visually challenged and show them in poor light. They need not make fun of anyone and should focus on creating promos which are truly humorous, funny but not at the cost of playing with the sentiments of people," it said.

Similarly, it took action against ICICI Bank, which has claimed 24-hour customer care services in an advertisement.

"However when you ring the number they say they only open from 8 AM to 8PM. The CCC concluded that the claim, ICICI Bank Corporate Banking services offers 24 hour customer care services is misleading," the ASCI said.

It also upheld claims against HDFC Bank, which had claimed "Pre Approved Personal loan - Disbursal in 48 Hours". However, CCC found that it was misleading as pre-approved means that the necessary checks have been done prior to sending the e-mailer.

"If there is no pre approval and each loan application is treated on its merits then using the header pre-approved personal loan appears to be misleading the recipient," it said.

It also upheld complaints against Life Insurance Corporation over showing unreadable content on screen during the advertisement.

Complaints against Godrej & Boyce were also upheld. The complanit alleged that the ad of Godrej Locks commoditised women, indicating that with age they become useless and that a man must upgrade to a newer model.

First Published: Thu, June 26 2014. 18:31 IST