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Patanjali tenders unconditional apology for misleading advertisements


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NEW DELHI: Patanjali Ayurved has tendered an unconditional apology to the Supreme Court while complying with its notice asking it to show cause why contempt of court proceedings should not be initiated for allegedly flouting an undertaking given to the top court on November 21, 2023.

The affidavit filed  by Acharya Balkrishna said that he “regrets that the advertisement in question which was meant to contain only general statements inadvertently included the offending sentences”.

Earlier, both Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna had been directed by the top court to appear in person in court on April 2 for not responding to contempt notice.

The unconditional apology of the respondents came in an affidavit filed days after he was summoned to appear in person before the top court along with Baba Ramdev on April 2.

"The Deponent on behalf of Respondent No. 5 (Patanjali Ayurved) submits an unqualified apology before this Hon’ble Court for the breach of the statement recorded in Para 3 of the order dated 21.11.2023,” the affidavit said. Balkrishna also assured the court that he “will ensure that such advertisements are not issued in the future”.

A dissatisfied Supreme Court on Tuesday took strong exception to Patanjali Ayurved, its MD for not filing their reply to its earlier notices on 'violating' an undertaking on misleading advertising products, forcing it to direct Baba Ramdev and Balkrishna to be personally present before it in the next date in the case. 

The order of the Top Court seemed to be a big setback for yoga guru, Baba Ramdev and Patanjali.

The apex court's  two-judge Bench, led by Justice Hima Kohli and also comprising Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah, passed these remarks against Patanjali and others, after hearing a petition filed by the Indian Medical Association (IMA).

The IMA alleged that this was completely wrong and misinformation on the part of Patanjali Ayurveda's advertisements, which claimed to cure certain diseases including; Blood Pressure, Diabetes and Asthma. "It is completely wrong to advertise on such kind of diseases and to cure such diseases," the IMA said. 

In the previous hearing on February 27, the Court had imposed a temporary ban on advertisements of the Patanjali Ayurved's medicines, and issued contempt notices to its founders Ramdev and Balkrishna for making misleading claims.

The Supreme Court had earlier in its order restrained the company from issuing all advertisements relating to various diseases; including; Blood Pressure, Diabetes and Asthma.

The Apex Court in its earlier order restrained a temporary ban - including Print and TV -- on Patanjali medicine advertisements. 

Relying on Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act 1954, the Apex Court in its order restrained Patanjali Ayurved from advertising its products relating to diseases/ disorders.

(THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)