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Advertising industry watchdog upholds complaints against 84 misleading ads

New Delhi: Advertising industry watchdog ASCI upheld complaints against 84 campaigns in August for misleading ads, including those of Honda Car India, Maruti Suzuki, Hyundai Motors, eBay, TataSky and HUL.

According to the Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of ASCI (Advertising Standard Council of India), it received 95 complaints during the month and a maximum 41 complaints of misleading ads were upheld from the personal and healthcare category.

The council concluded that leading auto maker Maruti Suzuki violated its code by showing its hatch back Swift doing acrobatic turns at high speed in an advertisement with a a father and a small child. Both were shown as enjoying the ride and giving high five.

It "creates an impression of showing a dangerous practice and manifests a disregard for safety by implication," said ASCI.

The ad regulator also upheld a case against Honda Car India and said it price offer for Amaze "distorts facts and was misleading".

"The advertisement of Honda Amaze shows the price for the car starting from Rs 5,45,678 which is cancelled out and the price is brought down to Rs 5,25,000, which was found to be the price of the base model," it said.

Similarly, it also pulled up Hyundai Motors India Ltd after it failed to substantiate its claim in ad that Hyundai Econ now starts at Rs 2.40 lakh. According to the ASCI, Hyundai's claim offer "distorts facts and is misleading".

The advertisement regulator also pulled DTH service provide TataSky for showing a ten year old girl in its TVC saying drinking green tea will protect her from mosquitoes.

"This fact has been added by TataSky from websites which have no scientifically proven data, thereby TVC misrepresents facts and is not based on scientifically validated data and is misleading," it added.

It also pulled up Hindustan Unilever for showing visuals of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) in input water and output water of its water purifier PureitUltima.

"The TDS visual was considered misleading as there is no sensor to detect TDS of the input water in the product," it added.

A complaint against e-retailing firm eBay was also upheld where it in an ad had claimed having an online promotional offer of 20 per cent off on purchase of a product subject to a maximum limit of Rs 3,000 on using a given coupon code.

"This advertisement is misleading by omission as it did not mention the terms and conditions such as this offer is on "first come first serve basis" and it gave no visibility to customers to know if the limit to avail this offer had been reached," the ad regulator said.

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