ASCI wins EASA gold award for resolving complaints fast

ASCI has received a gold award from EASA, the single voice of advertising self-regulation in Europe, for significantly reducing average time taken to handle complaints

The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has received a gold award from European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA) for significantly reducing the average time taken to handle complaints.


"Last year we won the EASA Silver Awards for the National Advertising Monitoring Service (NAMS) initiative, which started tracking most of the print and TV ads in India. That award spurred us to focus on improving ASCI's effectiveness and credibility as a SRO delivering speedier redressal of complaints and higher compliance of its decisions, which has got the Gold this year," said Partha Rakshit, chairman of ASCI in a release.


EASA, the single voice of advertising self-regulation in Europe, said, "The ASCI put in place actions to substantially reduce the journey time of complaints - from their first point of contact with the Secretariat, through the Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) and on to the transmission of the final decision to the advertiser and complainant."


With the new system, ASCI has reduced the lead time of complaints processing to 12 days from on an average from 45 days. Suspension Pending Investigation (SPI) was one of the significant measures of ASCI whereby an extremely objectionable ad can be removed immediately pending investigation. Expansion of its Consumer Complaints Councils (CCCs) to two from one and weekly meetings instead of bi-monthly also helped ASCI to reduce response time for complaints.


ASCI was awarded the gold by the judges comprising representatives from the advertising industry associations like advertisers, agencies and media.

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    International transit points on alert to check black money during election

    The DRI has asked customs officials posted at international transit points to remain vigilant during the Lok Sabha polls and keep a check on passengers and baggage coming from sensitive sectors, including the Gulf

    All international airports, ports and land borders in India have been put on alert by the Department of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) to check the circulation of fake Indian currency notes (FICN) and black money during the ongoing Lok Sabha elections.


    The DRI, the lead agency to check smuggling and import duty evasion, has asked customs officials posted at international transit points to remain vigilant during the Lok Sabha polls and keep a check on passengers and baggage coming from sensitive sectors, including the Gulf.


    The alert was issued some time back following an input that there may be a spurt in smuggling of fake currency notes from abroad during the polls.


    There are 18 international airports in the country — Amritsar, Jaipur, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Guwahati, Nagpur, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Goa, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kozhikode, Coimbatore, Tiruchirapalli, Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Port Blair.


    Customs officials have been also asked to be alert at international transit land routes, including the Attari-Wagah border (Punjab) and Munabao Railway Station in Jodhpur (Rajasthan), among others.


    “Ports along the country’s coast lines bringing in cargo from other nations have also been alerted to keep a check on smuggling of fake currency notes and circulation of black money,” an official said.


    The customs officials are also maintaining a strict vigil on frequent passengers to and from Gulf nations and the South-East sector (Malaysia, the Philippines, Cambodia, Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand, among others).

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    Saradha scam: ED seizes assets worth Rs140 crore
    While attaching assets of individuals and firms worth Rs140 crore on money laundering charges, the ED issued summons to several entities, including MPs
    Widening its probe into the multi-crore Saradha chit fund scam, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has issued summons to numerous entities even as it attached assets worth Rs140 crore of individuals and firms on money laundering charges.
    The ED has also issued a notice asking general public 'to furnish information and particulars of properties, both movable and immovable as well as bank accounts, in West Bengal and other places, if any, related to Saradha group known to them, with specific details' to it.
    Recently, ED's zonal office in Kolkata issued summons to about 15 people involved in the funds transactions of the Saradha scam that was being perpetrated largely in West Bengal, Odisha and Assam and came to the fore early last year after duped investors raised their voice of grievance.
    The agency has asked those involved in the case, including some sitting and former members of Parliament (MPs) and their family members, to present themselves or send their authorised representatives for recording of their statements under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act before 25th April.
    The notices come in the backdrop of ED attaching Rs105.62 crore assets of various entities involved in the case including Saradha Director Sudipta Sen and his wife Piyali.
    It had attached Rs34 crore worth of assets earlier in the same probe.
    ED registered a money laundering case last year taking cognisance of the three state police departments.
    The agency has till now issued attachment orders on all equity shares of all 224 companies of the Saradha group, insurance policies in the name of Sen and his wife, numerous land properties and plots, 390 bank accounts and equity shares of a TV channel run by the beleaguered group.
    The agency has also issued an advisory that no one should “transact” in these attached assets without seeking permission of the agency.
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