It  often happens in the cases of misleading ads that order is passed by the court holding such practices as unfair under Consumer Protection Act and order for compensation is passed .Such orders are complied to the extent that compensation is paid but since that  order is passed for one case,it is implemented in that particular case.Fine enough,none stops them to repeat the same act, misleading ads still go on their way in the same manner. In most of such ads   by beauty clinics for slimming and weight loss ,number of judgements are passed against them day in and day out.They  even do not contest the cases and ex-parte orders are passed against  them It suits them as they do not find it necessary to contest their case and argue that they are not indulging into unfair trade practice-neither said no nor said yes.Hence the practice goes on.People visit their clinics,pay huge amounts after get  allured through their ads. Even if there is an order against them for not giving such ads,they do appear because the case winner gets the order executed,get compensation and matter ends ,rest of the part if not implemented ,non appears for non-compliance of that part .Consumer courts do not have power to do any thing suo-moto in this regard.

Here again   is a case decided by the Hon’ble Supreme Court on 5.4.2013 which had got much publicity when was pronounced by the Hon’ble National Commission in the matter of Bhanwar Kanwar V/S R.K.Gupta And Others .Its about Neeraj Clinic Pvt. Ltd. situated at Rishikesh in Uttrakhand who had given wide publicity through newspaper Jansatta on 8.8.1993. for their clinic claiming total cure of patients having fits  through Ayurvedic treatment by Dr R.K.Gupta.The brief facts in the case before the Hon’ble National Commission were that the complainat’s son Prashant had fits during high fever and hence he  contacted the clinic for treatment.Dr R.K Gupta gave medicines stating that the medicines given are the combination of hundreds of herbs .The condition of the child did not improve,rather fits became more frequent with longer duration and happened  even without fever also.When checked the medicines given ,it was found that a tablet named as ‘selgin’ was not meant for children and also doctor was passing on allopathic medicines as ayurvedic medicines. He was even not registered for allopathic medicines with any medical council ,no registration number was provided by the treating doctor at any stage during the proceedings before the National Commission. The medicines were sent for laboratory test to the Shri Ram Institute for Industrial Research  New Delhi for the above findings. National commission held guilty Dr R K Gupta for unfair trade practice by giving false and misleading ads and slapped compensation to the tune of Rs five lacs out Of which 2.50 lacs was to be given to complainant and rest 50% to the consumer welfare fund. Now matter comes before the supreme court on the point of enhancement of compensation to the consumer. While agreeing to the order of the National commission ,Supreme Court enhanced the compensation from five lacs to fifteen lacs with the direction to pay the entire amount to the complainant modifying the order of depositing 50% to the consumer welfare fund.

The important thing to be noted is that there is no order or direction to the clinic to stop advertising in future thogh it is implied that giving such ads is considered to be  unfair trade practice.As stated above ,in such cases advertisement still go on and none comes ahead to take any action against them .

 Yes there is a self regulatory body called ‘The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) (1985) who has adopted a Code for Self-Regulation in Advertising. It is a commited see to honest Advertising and to fair competition in the market-place. It stands for the protection of the legitimate interests of consumers and all concerned with Advertising - Advertisers, Media, Advertising Agencies and others who help in the creation or placement of advertisements.

But this agency is having no sharp teeth to deal with such situations as stated above.

Under such circumstances it is high time that consumer welfare organizations come ahead to take care of this aspect and do meaningful job in this field to meet  the purpose for which a special  provision of unfair trade practicing was made through amendment  in the consumer protection act in the year 2002 .


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