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Ads watchdog upholds complaints against 68 advertisements

New Delhi: Advertising sector watchdog ASCI upheld complaints against 68 out of 108 advertisements in March for misleading ads, including those of Hindustan Unilever Ltd, Cadbury India, Heinz India and PVR Ltd. According to the Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of Advertising Standard Council of India, health and personal care category continued to lead with 44 violations in this regard.

Complaint against Hindustan Unilever's Vaseline Healthy White Lotion were upheld for "showing exaggerated claims of instant whitening on skin". Complaints against Cadbury India's 5 star were upheld for showing a lady giving birth to a baby who is laughing. "The voice-over says that the babies used to be laughing while being born in earlier days and later they started crying at childbirth due to a disease called seriousness.

So eat 5 star to become jovial again," ASCI said. "The CCC concluded that the frames in the TVC showing the process of child birth are gross and offensive. The complaint was upheld. This advertisement received 21 such complaints against it," it added. Complaint against Heinz India's Complan brand was upheld.

"The CCC concluded that the total intake of added sugar through Complan, when served in milk as suggested on pack instructions, could reach the maximum RDA values. The internet content when referred to in conjunction with pack instructions, contravened guidelines on advertising of foods & beverages," ASCI said. Meanwhile, complaint against PVR Ltd was upheld for misleading by omission in the absence of an appropriate disclaimer.

ASCI said PVR Cinemas claims unlimited refill offer on soft beverages. "The offer is only available from Monday to Thursday; however the poster on a stand does not carry any description that the offer is limited to week days only. The ad does not mention 'conditions apply'," it added.

ASCI also upheld 15 complaints in the education sector for unsubstantiated claims. As per ASCI, claims by educational institutes including DAV Institute of Engineering & Technology, Sachdeva College, Triumphant Institute of Management Education Pvt Ltd and Institute of Management Studies were not substantiated, thereby violating guidelines for advertising of educational institutions.

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