The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) upheld complaints against 54 out of 84 advertisements in September 2015.
Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of Advertising Standard Council of India (ASCI) upheld 13 complaints of misleading advertisements from personal and healthcare category, seven in telecom and broadband category and six in ecommerce category during the month. The CCC has upheld five complaints against leading telecom operator Bharti Airtel, in which four was for promotions of its 4G services and one was for broadband service.
“The claim offer of, ‘Get the same data benefits as your 3G pack and enjoy superfast 4G speeds at no extra cost; Free 4G Upgrade’ was found misleading by omission of a disclaimer qualifying that the benefits offered under retail plans are not available to users under corporate plans,” ASCI said in its order.
In another matter, the ad regulator said, “The website mentions MyPlan infinity with Airtel 4G plan has many terms and conditions and the calls are capped at 5,000 minutes per month. Therefore the choice of the term ‘unlimited’ was incorrect. The claim, ‘Unlimited Calling, only with Airtel 4G’ was false and misleading“.
Similarly, Bharti Airtel’s claim for its broadband services was found misleading. “The claim in the advertisement,’We at Airtel are giving away exciting surprises to all our broadband users’ was misleading by omission of a disclaimer qualifying conditions under which the claim is tenable for the offer,” CCC said.
Private sector lender HDFC Bank failed to substantiate its claim of loan approval in 15 minutes. While, e-commerce firm Flipkart was also pulled up for two of its claims by ASCI. Flipkart had on its website claimed the MRP of Tek-Tron velroc safety outdoor shoes as Rs. 599, while actual printed MRP on the product was Rs. 499 and offered on discounted price.
Other brands that released misleading ads include, Bennett Coleman & Co. (Alive App), HT Media (Shine.com), Bloomberg TV India, Raheja Corp. (Shoppers Stop), HDFC Bank (Two Wheeler Loan Offer), Home Town, Kerala Fashion Jewellery, Jaguar Group (Jaguar bathroom fittings) and Philips Electronics India (Philips modular switches) among others.