Inter-ministerial committee to look into issue of misleading ads: Thomas

   Nov 17, 4:47 pm

New Delhi, Nov 17 (ANI): Expressing concern over misleading advertisements targeting vulnerable sections of society, Food and Consumers Affairs Minister K.V. Thomas today said he is mulling over the possibility of setting up an inter-ministerial committee to check false and misleading advertisements effectively.

Addressing a conference on 'Strengthening Self Regulation of Advertising Content' organized by the Advertising Standards Council of India, Thomas said: "In view of large number of consumer complaints, the government is considering setting up an inter-ministerial committee to look at ways and means to check false and misleading advertisements effectively."

He further said there is an urgent need to prevent such advertisement before they appear and harm innocent consumers by strengthening existing laws and self regulatory mechanisms.

"What we need is a mechanism to effectively prevent such advertisements before they appear; before they convey the message and do the harm. And that's what self-regulation is all about- not doing something that you have undertaken not to do. Follow the code of self regulation stringently and truthfully, so that such advertisements do not appear at all," he added.

He expressed doubts over the effectiveness of self-regulation in the Indian ad industry while observing there were various laws to regulate content of advertisements.

"Unfortunately, laws like the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act and the Cable Television Network Regulation Act have not had the desired effect to prevent misleading ads," he said.

"We now need to take a close look at them to see how best to achieve the purpose for which these laws and regulations were made in the first place," he added. (ANI)

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