Misleading advertisements in the AYUSH sector to be regulated
In order to curtail malpractices in the advertisement of AYUSH drugs, the Ministry of AYUSH has signed a MoU with the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI). Addressing the cases of misleading advertisements with respect to Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy drugs, treatments and related services, ASCI will comprehensively monitor these advertisements across print and electronic media. The MoU was signed by Advisor (Ayurveda), Ministry of AYUSH Dr Dinesh Chan Katoch and Srinivasan K Swamy, Chairman, ASCI, in the presence of Ajit M Sharan, Secretary, AYUSH at New Delhi.
ASCI has been given a self-monitoring mandate by the Ministry of AYUSH to identify potentially misleading advertisement in the AYUSH sector and process complaints through its Consumer Complaints Council (CCC). The Ministry of AYUSH will also redirect complaints against misleading advertisements they receive, to the ASCI, which will be reviewed using ASCI’s code and guidelines. The MoU also requires ASCI to report to the Ministry of AYUSH, all advertisements in potential violation of the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954 and Rules thereunder as well as non-compliance of ASCI’s CCC recommendations for the Ministry of AYUSH to take further action.
Sharan, said that the MoU is yet another important step taken by the AYUSH ministry to ensure that Indian consumers have access to safe and effective medicines. The arrangement would also ensure that any advertisement making claims for diseases and disorders, in violation of the existing regulations, are immediately brought to our attention.
Swamy said, “AYUSH is among the top three sectors where we find a high incidence of misleading advertisements and some of the advertisements in the AYUSH sector claiming treatment of certain diseases in violation of the Drugs and Magic Remedies Regulations have been a cause of concern. ASCI’s partnership with the Ministry of AYUSH will provide the necessary support to our efforts in effectively curtailing misleading advertisements in this sector.”