Questions that the mainstream media ignored in 2013

While news channels are outraged about something or the other every weeknight, here are some of the issues the media ignored in 2013

We have an aam aadmi sitting in the chief minister’s chair in Delhi, after having shocked the capital’s power-brokers as well as Mumbai’s moneybags. Everybody is talking about a new wind blowing in the country. Middle-class awakening, helped by the social media, which, when translated to a significant increase in voter turnout, upset the Delhi electoral math and threw up game-changing results. Will the story be repeated elsewhere? Is there really a new intolerance for corruption among people and a willingness to fight for their rights? Well, the 2014 elections will provide an answer. But a dispassionate analysis will show that, in 2013, the rich and powerful got away with the same old machinations and they also dictated what is fit to be published or debated at super prime time.

The Watchdog that Didn’t Bark: The Financial Crisis and the Disappearance of Investigative Journalism, recently excerpted by Columbia Journalism Review, says, “The US business press failed to investigate and hold accountable Wall Street banks and major mortgage lenders in the years leading up to the financial crisis of 2008. That’s why the crisis came as such a shock to the public and to the press itself. And that’s the news about the news.” It also mentions how “some journalists, mostly outside the mainstream, were able to produce work that in fact did reflect the radical changes overtaking the financial system while the vast majority in the mainstream did not.”
Doesn’t this ring true of India today? There are questions that nobody asks; stories that die because they are simply not followed up or buried by hysterical and motivated pursuit of select and, often inconsequential, issues. The best example, in recent times. is that report of the speeding Aston Martin that was completely destroyed, after it crashed into two cars on the road where Mukesh Ambani lives in his billion-dollar home. Initial reports said that the driver of the Aston Martin was bundled into a security car and whisked away.

Later, a driver turned up to accept responsibility for the rash driving. There was no arrest. The owners of the damaged cars suddenly acquired new and more expensive cars, which may have induced haziness in their recollection of events. This is bound to happen, when the driver is rumoured to be the son of the richest Indian.

The expensive, customised Rs4.3-crore Aston Martin belongs to Reliance Ports and Terminals, which the media reports variously say is a Reliance group company or a subsidiary of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL). In that case, shouldn’t shareholders of RIL be asking why the company owns such an expensive car, rather than the chairman who takes home over Rs200 crore annually as dividend? Sure, Reliance is a giant company and its board of directors is not expected to look into trifling expenses like a Rs4.3-crore Aston Martin. But that is not the reason why they are not asking the questions.
Reliance Ports & Terminals (RPTL) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Industries Holding Private Limited, which owns all personal companies of Mukesh Ambani, built on large fund transfers from the publicly-listed RIL to these private entities. All this was in the public domain when brothers Anil and Mukesh were at loggerheads.

In fact, Firstpost wrote a hard-hitting article (Reliance funnels money and business to Mukesh Ambani’s private companies) about how RIL was “paying Mukesh Ambani Rs4,300 crore for bankrolling his private companies for fuel, transport, power, water and gas distribution”, in 2011. RPTL received Rs2,600 crore from RIL that year, says the Firstpost report. They have a guaranteed business from RIL and enjoy a triple AAA rating from CRISIL (whose report is silent about the peculiar funding and ownership).

In its unaudited results for June 2013, the company continues to report a net loss (carried forward) of about Rs4 crore. That figure is lower than the cost of the Aston Martin, used by the Ambanis, from money ‘funneled’ from the listed company. So what has Firstpost written this time on the Aston Martin scandal? Well, not much. You see, its parent, the TV18 group, is owned by Mukesh Ambani, in a complex deal, which saw a mammoth Rs3,500 crore injected into the loss-making media empire, to save it from imploding, about two years ago.

Let’s look at another example. The year-enders of every publication agree that Tarun Tejpal’s fall from grace was one of the biggest shockers of 2013. The fact is that Tejpal’s power did not emanate merely from his brilliance and brash confidence, but was owed, in no small measure, to the firm public conviction that he has the protection of the Congress high command.

How come Tehelka’s own investigative teams didn’t notice that the math behind their salary cheques, advertisements and spending did not add up? How did the tax authorities studiously look away, even when they saw large injection of funds from KD Singh of the Alchemist group and the shady Ponty Chadda (who was dramatically shot by his brother at their farm house) to set up an exclusive club called Pruffrock?

It wasn’t until the media-feeding frenzy that followed Tarun Tejpal’s sexual assault on a young colleague, and his subsequent arrest, that triggered a ‘probe’ by the tax authorities. Consider the irony. At a time when the government claims that our every foreign trip or purchase above Rs20,000 is tracked and reported to the taxman, the tax authorities will start investigating Tehelka’s unusual 2006 transaction now. On one day, the Tejpal family transferred 25,758 shares at a whopping premium, while Tarun Tejpal acquired 4,125 shares from Shankar Sharma and Devina Mehra of First Global, the original financiers of Tehelka, at just Rs10 each. The Indian Express says Tehelka issued such exorbitantly priced shares in 2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09 and 2011-12 without the taxmen ever noticing these egregious deals.  

From the media perspective, the bigger question is: Who were these investors and what were they paying for? Celebrities and intellectuals, who have supported Tehelka’s sting journalism, continue to sing paeans to its investigative work without asking how it enriched the Tejpal family instead of isolating it.

Finally, the more frightening story that is rarely discussed, except in a manner that makes no sense to ordinary people, is the sharp growth in bad loans or non-performing assets (NPAs) of Indian banks. The Congress-led government has allowed bad loans to balloon to a point where they are threatening the stability of the banking system. The mammoth All India Bank Employees Federation (AIBEA) has blown the whistle, named wilful defaulters and given a call to ‘stop the loot of public funds’ and start recovery of bad loans.

But the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) paints a more frightening picture. RBI’s financial stability report, released on 30th December says, “Failure of a major corporate or a major corporate group could trigger a contagion in the banking system due to exposures of a large number of banks to such corporates. The analysis shows that interconnectedness in the banking sector could cause losses due to contagion, over and above the direct losses on account of the failure of large corporate groups.” Bluntly speaking, it means that your safe fixed deposits in nationalised banks may no longer be as safe; when crisis grips the country, those too will be affected.

None of these issues is systematically pursued by India’s mainstream media (MSM). Loss-making MSM, desperate for advertising or capital infusion, do not have the luxury of editorial freedom. The most profitable media house openly puts advertising far above journalism. But the fault lies mainly with the reader, who cannot distinguish between outrage expressed on blogs and social media, and serious, unbiased investigation that requires organisation, funds and paid subscribers. Like the politicians, we get the press we deserve.

Sucheta Dalal is the managing editor of Moneylife. She was awarded the Padma Shri in 2006 for her outstanding contribution to journalism. She can be reached at [email protected]

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COMMENTS

Anil Agashe

5 years ago

Most company owners cars on company name to claim depreciation and to debit all expenses to co accounts. Reliance is doing the same thing. I would be surprised if there are any directors in other companies who buy their own cars. Even the cars used by family must be on co books!

patanjali

5 years ago

Nice!
It was also very good to see that I can post a comment on this site without going through other sites (including Twitter, Gmail, Facebook, etc. etc) AND signing up by acepting thier condition of viewing my personal data, as well as that of all my contacts!
I am sure, all that is also "paid"!
That said, on the article itself my comment is as follows: in the end the only credible news will be the ones we "subscribe" to - such as this private website. All "public" channels, like newspapaers and TV news, will need to get money from sponsors.

R P SHIVKUMAR

5 years ago

Detailed investigation is required of public sector NPAs and the companies names who have defaulted should be published. Also no update is available on the unpaid salaries of Kingfisher employees and if no effort is made to make mallya pay them thier dues

CHILUKURI K R L RAO

5 years ago

I couldn't agree more with Ms.Sucheta Dalal when she says, "Like the politicians, we get the press we deserve".

Himanshu Gandhi

5 years ago

The greatest challenge to India’s future is not dwindling natural resources, or corruption, or divisively fractured political establishment, but deeply pervasive abject indifference of a wide swath of masses.

Those at one end of the pole with capacity and resources to make a change continue to maroon the trust and fabric of nation for their own unashamed lustful greed, scheming with corrupt bureaucratic setup for means unto themselves with abject disregard for morality, ethics and making of a capable nation.

While, for those at the other end of the same pole, daily struggle to cope with hyper inflation can barely make them ponder about the road ahead.

And, the growing glorified middle remains gruesomely detached from inner circles of power, almost scared to pit their head in the smoldering pit of ever growing underground economy with well entrenched politico-goons connections wielding control at local government establishments.

If there is only one area that we have failed miserably, as an individual and as a nation... it is, not living by our virtues. As, how can a nocturnal enlighten anyone in his/her circle of influence on beauty of a rainbow?

In India, like any developing/developed places, intellect has mostly gone awry to service fear or greed, or has succumbed to avarice. Culture of sympathy, tolerance, forgiveness and notion of for-the-greater-good need be taught, learned and practiced afresh. There is no other alternative.

Can we... all who care to see our nation free from corruption... resolve to not pay up into the demands of a bribe, and… resolve not to make way for our gain by aiding or abetting any corrupt practices, and… resolve not to engage in any transactions that cause or involve black money, or that are helped by seeking or giving undue underhand favors?

Can we... all who care to see our nation respect women... resolve to not pay up into the demands of a dowry, and… resolve not to engage in barter of dowry, which remains a root cause for female foeticide and female infanticide, and… resolve not to be entertained by sounds and images stocking carnal thoughts and insidious behavior?

Can we… all who care to see our nation clean and green… resolve to start with clean up of our own building, street, and neighborhood, and… resolve to grow and save vegetation in our sphere of influence?

Can we... all who care to see our nation lead into better governance… resolve to be more involved in public policy making institutions, processes and be willing to cross to the other side to face the music?

Can we... all who care to see our nation succeed... resolve not to disparage it and be part of the solution, and… resolve to pitch in with volunteering hours and any resources that we can spare... to work on common good?

Unless, we are honest with ourselves and care to start with self... we would have failed all of those that have sacrificed their lives to make this nation. And more regretfully, failed our children to leave behind a legacy to call their place a home… no matter where we live.

Extortion or any corrupt practices are a chase of those that feed on their greed, and our fear. We cannot curb their greed… but can work on our fear.

What we can certainly not do is to stoke those tendencies by essentially practicing in the same circle, for our own benefit... for instance:

1. Corrupt practices are rife not only in public sector, but widely prevalent today in private sector. Each and every honest businessperson in our nation will recount the magnitude and stifling hold of common place norms of deceit, vogue of black money and deeply ingrained culture of favoritism.
2. Large majority of transactions from real estate to purchase of goods & services are facilitated by, or engender, unaccounted or black money.
3. Very few make deliberate and conscious efforts to distance themselves from corrupt practices. In effect, make hay of them for own benefit, or surrendering their plight without honest efforts to resist.

Diminutive forces drowning our nation will become fearful once challenge to them becomes strong. Start inadvertently needs to be from somewhere where we are most uncomfortable with... our self. Only then will foundation of our challenge be strong enough to sustain long drawn on struggle... for real independence, and reverting to our heritage, as a virtuous nation.

Himanshu Gandhi

5 years ago

There are multiple outlets for paid "news" and corrupted "views"...

Sanity with a cause for true public service was long "voted down" for "print worthiness".

Indian Ears

5 years ago

EXCELLENT and Hard Hitting Article.

CONGRATS !

Dayananda Kamath k

5 years ago

another big story ignored by inidan media is gold imports by private jewellers and bullian traders on third party lc in the name of nominated agencies in violation of import export policy, banking norms,and rabi regulations.after 5 years rbi woke up but did not bothered to initiate action against bankers importers, and the nominated agencies executive who by giving letters for which they do not have authority. matter not refered to enforcement directorate by rbi nor banks who are supposed to do it as per fema.matter brought to the notice of pti. moneylife, zee news.but they also ignored it.

Indian Ears

5 years ago

SUPERB !

REPLY

Sucheta Dalal

In Reply to Indian Ears 5 years ago

Many thanks

Jyoti Dua

5 years ago

Very thought provoking article. Today we need my more Journalists to come up with true stories into public domain.Congrats Suchita

REPLY

Sucheta Dalal

In Reply to Jyoti Dua 5 years ago

Many thanks

Vinay Joshi

5 years ago

This is pertaining to Aston Martin accident only.

In my city, Bombay, the said St. Nicholas - 'Santa Clause', got THE 'ASTON MARTIN' victims for X'mas - 'ALL THE GOODIES'.!? THEY NEVER MAY HAVE IMAGINED!?

Owners / victims of two crashed cars, smashed by 'Aston Martin Rapid','SANTA CHEERED THEM WITH TWO UPGRADED CARS!?

So Santa Clause does deliver X'mas goodies, is proved!
Goodies delivered on Tues, 24.

Ms. Ruparel got upgrade Audi-6, [damaged Audi-4] Mr. Mehta got upgrade Skoda Superb [damaged car Hyundai Elentra, -COMPENSATION FOR ONLY BOOT & BUMPER DAMAGE -
FALLACY - both can retrieve their damaged cars, refurbished & keep it!?

Mr. Tushar Ruparel, father of Ms. Ruparel claimed, 25th, people from RIL were in touch with both families to discuss settlement.

Monday, 23, both the complainants have withdrawn their 'police complaint', one complainant had testified in front of Magistrate, u/s 164 as evidence, [i.e Ms Ruparel, student, age 25] second was Vikram Mehta, a pharma Exec.

Another twist in the story, only Ruparel family later denied getting any compensation to replace Audi-4 with Audi-6.
Audi-6 costs 4mn INR, no compensation by insurance co, can any claim be settled within twenty days? Dichotomy - Mrs. Ruparel says we have purchased it with our own money!? No RIL compensation involved! 4.5mn, said car in your house 'garlanded'!?

The licence plate of the new car bearing a fancy number - MH03 BJ 6666, trigger from RTO which highlighted & a show cause notice issued, 26th.
The special number cost, RESERVE PRICE, 70K & taxes 40K!

Further as per RTO record the L/P no purchased yet not allotted by Wadala RTO, AS THE CAR IS NOT YET REGISTERED!?

Oohh! Ruparel family said they wanted to register it only on Jan 4!?

SO FIXING NUMBER PLATE BEFORE REGISTRATION IS ILLEGAL & POSSIBLY SANTA MADE IT DONE!?
SANTA WILL ALSO QUASH THE LEGAL RTO NOTICE!

Hello but now it's to be determined how legally SANTA can play!

FIR lodged, u/s 164 st, police investigation - standstill- & obviously the case will be heard by the magistrate court, 'GAMDEVI POLICE' present - "NOTHING THEY WILL HAVE TO STATE"!!?? One need not wait for the court order for case withdrawal!

SANTA Claus, St. Nicholoas, HAS BLESSED HIMSELF WITH THIS GIVINGS, CALLED HAPPENINGS!?

NOT TO BE CONSTRUED AS GIVER 'SANTA' ALSO TAKES FROM HIS GIVER'S!?
SANTA's SANTA KEEP ON SHOWERING GIFTS UPON HIM ROUND THE YEAR AS HAS BEEN AS THIS SANTA AROUND!?

Who is prosecuted in the said accident? What is the latest as on Jan 8,2014 on this? SUBLIMED!

THIS IS CALLED GOVERNANCE. 'PATHBREAKING'. Pathbreakers.

Regards,

Vinay Joshi

5 years ago

Hello Ms. Sucheta,

Pathbreakers! Why any aspect now?

Regards,

REPLY

Vinay Joshi

In Reply to Vinay Joshi 5 years ago

Hello Ms. Sucheta,

No comments!? 'Pathbreakers - Pathbreaking!

Have you read Hamish McDonald's biography of Dhirubhai Ambani 'Polyester Prince'? It was banned in India some years ago? Can we conduct a forensic audit of entire 'episode'? Their empire! AS OF NOW? ALSO!?

Today Subrata Roy has got injunction against the publication of 'Regulators v/s Sahara' The Untold Story. The book by Tamal Bandopadhyay.
Sucheta you want me to introduce to you who Mr. Tamal is? You know him. One of the days he will grace your forum.

So is so.

Regards,

Sucheta Dalal

In Reply to Vinay Joshi 5 years ago

Mr Joshi
Greetings.
1. Do read Hamish MacDonald's book. You will see an acknowledgement to me and Debashis.
I also had the honour of releasing his second book, which includes the brothers fight! So don't understand your point at all!

2. As for Sahara, forget the book read our articles - we have done plenty of writing on it. Also, do attend the talk on corporate frauds by Mr Arvind Datar tomorrow. You may like to know that Adv Arvind Datar, a man of rare honesty, has fought the sahara case for SEBI in the Supreme Court doing a lot of his own research. And we have been in touch throughout.
So again.. what is your point, if any??

Vinay Joshi

In Reply to Vinay Joshi 5 years ago

Hello Ms. Sucheta,

No comments!? 'Pathbreakers - Pathbreaking!

Have you read Hamish McDonald's biography of Dhirubhai Ambani 'Polyester Prince'? It was banned in India some years ago? Can we conduct a forensic audit of entire 'episode'? Their empire! AS OF NOW? ALSO!?

Today Subrata Roy has got injunction against the publication of 'Regulators v/s Sahara' The Untold Story. The book by Tamal Bandopadhyay.
Sucheta you want me to introduce to you who Mr. Tamal is? You know him. One of the days he will grace your forum.

So is so.

Regards,

Anil Agashe

In Reply to Vinay Joshi 5 years ago

Dear Mr Joshi,
Pathbreakers has nothing to do with the present case. It is to be noted that Debashish ans Sucheta have written fearlessly when things are going wrong even about people covered in that book. That is the sign of independent journalism.

nilesh prabhu

5 years ago

what will happen to our F.D in case banks fail?

REPLY

Siddharth Varma

In Reply to nilesh prabhu 5 years ago

ur bank deposits are insured upto 1 lac

sathyacumaran

In Reply to nilesh prabhu 5 years ago

sathya cumaran
operational head india
singapore media and channel group
The RBi would come to rescue like Global trust bank was bankrupt adn immedaitely without any delay the RBi rose up and took the responsibility but still we can be sure that justice is there and morale is there inspite our PM is corrupt Pm but above all there is GOD is protecting our country

Vinay Joshi

In Reply to sathyacumaran 5 years ago

It denigrates you & not the PM!
You profess to be [of unknown] media.

Kindly do not respond to this post of mine, whatsoever, learn before posting in MLF.

Regards,

MOHAN SIROYA

5 years ago

Thank you for this information article.

ASCI bans 132 ads, including L’Oreal, P&G, Dabur, Bajaj Auto, Kent RO in October

Education, health and personal care category continue to lead with the highest number of complaints received by ASCI during October 2013.  There are some particular misleading ads which have sizeable number of complaints against them, the Council said in a release

The Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) under the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has banned as many as 132 advertisements across segments out of 169 during October 13. Among these are ads from prominent companies like Procter & Gamble's Pantene, Dabur India's New Fem Anti Darkening  Hair Removal Cream, LÓreal India's Fall Repair 3x shampoo, Hindustan Unilever (HUL)'s Dove Essential Nourishment Body Lotion and Fair & Lovely Fairness Cream as well as New Domex Zero Stain, Indian Institute of Banking (IIB), Info Edge (India) Ltd, Kalyan Jewellers, Havells Wires, Kent  Mineral RO Water Purifier, Bajaj Auto's Discover, Tata Docomo, GSK's Horkicks and Marico's Saffola Total; they range from FMCGs to autos, personal accessories to alcohol, and education to media.

 

“Most of the misleading ads were from the education sector and promise of 100% job placements was one of the recurring unsubstantiated claims made by the advertisers. This was followed by health & personal care category, where most of the upheld complaint ads were found misleading, or making false or unsubstantiated claims,” ASCI said in a release. 

 

Here are the ads that were banned by ASCI during October…

 

HEALTH AND PERSONAL CARE

The CCC found the following claims in health and personal care product or service ads of  92  advertisers,  released in the press to  be either misleading or false or not adequately/ scientifically substantiated and hence violating ASCI’s  Code. Some of the health care products or services ads also contravened  provisions of the Drug & Magic Remedies Act.


Complaints against the following ads were UPHELD –

 

1.  Navjeevan Nature Cure Center Claim:  They help in ‘weight  loss  from  5  -  7 Kg  in one week with detoxification’.

2.  Hootone Remedies:  The website claims to have cure for AIDS. Such medicines should be

acclaimed and accredited by Government.

3.  RC Creatives Sales Pvt Ltd: Roomani Oil claims that it is ‘very famous for men's energy’.  ‘Visual implies that the product is meant to enhance sexual pleasure.’

4.  Eli Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd:  Claim it is ‘effective in giving shine to your face and removes  black marks, it also prevents them to appear again.’

5.  Nature Care Wellness Pvt Ltd:  Claims that it can give you ‘freedom from diabetes in just six months, no side effect, heals from roots.’

6.  Anand Clinic: Claims that it is ‘complete treatment and solution of low sperm count, hydrocele without operation, infertility lycoria & infertility caused due to liquor and diabetes’,  it is ‘complete treatment of all sexual diseases.’

7.  Dr Anjali Shere Hair Science:  Claims that it is the first ‘Robotic Hair Transplant Centre in

Mumbai.’

8.  Hygienic Research Institute Pvt Ltd:  Super Vasmol 33 claimed that it is a ‘Natural method to colour hair’.

9.  Telemart Shopping Network Pvt Ltd:  Fairpro claims  that it ‘brightens up the complexion of dark skinned people in a very short time’.

10.  Vikas Publcity: Shreeji One Diabetes Kit claims that one can  ‘Get 100% success from lifetime capsule or insulin’.

11.  Prince Pharma:   2 much Gold Capsules claims that ‘1, 50, 00,000 people have used it  and are still using it.’

12.  Dr. Shukla Sex Clinic:  Claims that this clinic is a one a place ‘For most successful treatment of male weakness, premature ejaculation, semen in urine, infertility, less sperms and for all sexually transmitted diseases’.

13.  Ashirvad Enterprises Ltd:  Ashirvad Pure claims that it is ‘India's only one company who provides RO+UV+UF with pH Enhancer’.

14.  Jeevan Jyoti Fertility Hospital: Claims that it gives ‘Complete treatment of infertility’.

15.  Win Diabetes Clinic:  Claims that it ‘Gets you rid of painful injections of insulin in just 10 days’, ‘100% effective herbal product’, ‘no magic, no miracle, astonishing result of years of research.’

16.  Krushnakant Sanjivani Natural Spondylitis & Obesity:  Claims that it gives ‘100% guaranteed Ayurvedic treatment’, ‘Obesity in 3 months reduces 10-15 kgs.’

17.  Dr.  Manjiris Instasculpt:  Claims that it is a ‘Safe, Permanent, Instant & Non-surgical treatments for Figure, Face & Hair.’ One can ‘lose up to 10 kg in 10 weeks’.

18.  Melblok Treatment Centre:  Claims that ‘Melblok treats hyper or dark pigmented skin patches, blemishes, dark circles, uneven complexion, dull skin, acne marks, melasma, rough skin & open pores’. ‘Melblok clears acne with its marks completely, when everything fails.’

19.  Sanjeevani Homeopathic Medical Center:  Claims that it gives ‘Successful treatment of all types (gall bladder and kidney) of stones without any cut and operation with the help of complete homeopathic medicines.’

20.  Dr Pandya skin Clinic Cosmetic & laser Center:  Claims that it gives ‘Freedom from baldness (treatment through  stem cell technique)’, ‘Benefits:  growing of  natural  hair,  growing of hair without Surgery’, ‘No need of hair transplant, no side effect, affordable and easy treatment.’

21.  Yog Vigyan Sansthan: Claims that it gives ‘permanent cure for sex diseases so that you get rid of consuming medicines every now and then & gives instant benefit.’

22.  Shree Baidyanath Ayur Bhawan:  Baidyanath Mahasudarshan  Ghanbati  claims  that it is the ‘best medicine for fever’, ‘useful in all kinds of fever (new, outworn, malaria and typhoid).’

23.  Sri Ram Hospital Group:  Claims that it gives ‘benefits of surgery for  obesity-  get rid of diabetes, blood pressure, and heart problem.’

24.  JP Dikshit Yog & Prakrutik Chikitsalay:  Claims that it gives ‘successful treatment of all incurable diseases without medicines like Eczema, Psoriasis.’

25.  Detox Supplements: Claims that it is a ‘sure solution for liver diseases.’

26.  Parul Homeo Laboratories P Ltd:  Heightex Tablets implies that the product is meant to affect stature.

27.  Looks Cosmetic Clinic:  Claims that they can alter looks with ‘No Surgeries, No Needles, No Pain, No Downtime, No Side Effects , Lipo Laser - Lose up to 5-20 inches in a month.’

28.  Dr. Shukla Sex Clinic: Claims that it is ‘No.1 sex clinic of Kanpur since last 15 years.’

29.  Dr Kamlesh G Laser & Body Care: Claims that it helps you ‘Reduce 10 to 12 inch in just 2 hours.’

30. Gift Gyno IVF and Infertility Centre:  Claims that ‘5000 infertile couples have had successful pregnancies through GIFT Centre.’

31. Shape & Glow: Claims that they give ‘Guaranteed 5 Kg weight loss’, ‘Lipo Laser removes fat.’

32.  Slimming Beauty and Hair Clinic: This clinic has infringed on the Richfeel Anagrow Logo as well as the images used by Richfeel have been used.

33.  Torque Pharma (No Scars):  Claims that it gives ‘effective medicine for removing scars’ and ‘reduces and removes scars & marks.’

34.  Shree Kalyan Ayurvedashram:  Claims that they give ‘successful treatment for white spots’. ‘After beginning the  treatment,  white spots will reduce and will appear as normal skin

complexion’, ‘guaranteed benefit by treatment.’

35.  OPTM Health Care:  Claims  that with ‘No Surgery,  No Injections, No Oral Medicines,  Free your knee from pain forever.’  ‘Organic Phyto Therapeutic Method  (Several chronic conditions listed such as gout, osteoarthirtis, spondylosis etc.).’

36.  S.P. Pharmaceuticals (Penzy Hair Oil/Capsule):  Claims  that it ‘stops baldness, breaking of hair and hair fall.’  

37.  Premi Skin Hair &  Laser Clinic:  Claims that it is a ‘Permanent treatment of white spots and surgical spots, baldness, laser therapy of unwanted hairs, warts.’

38.  Re-Touch Hair & Skin Clinic: Claims that one can ‘now get 100% freedom from Asthma and White spots.’

39.  Ghai Hospital: Claims that they help cure ‘manly weakness and is a guaranteed sure treatment of mistakes in childlessness, increasing age, impotency due sugar, early fall, undeveloped organ, night fall, breast beauty, childlessness, nil sperm count’, ‘effect from the very first day’. ‘After discontinuing the medicine the disease won't happen again.’

40.  S D Industries (Zosh Capsules):  The advertisement’s visual implies  that the product is meant for enhancing sexual pleasure.

41.  American IVF & Test Tube:  Claims that they provide ‘successful treatment to unblock the Fallopian Tube without any operation’, ‘lakhs  of people  have  benefited from this technique and are living a happy life.’

42.  Sri Om Ayurvedic Seva Sansthan:  Claims  ‘100%    successful treatment of Brain, Heart, Liver, Kidney, stomach disease, kidney stone, prostate, Obesity, skin disease, Diabetes, Arthritis and STD and Sexual disease etc.’ 

43.  Meghdoot Sewa Gramodyog Sansthan:  ‘Meghdoot Gramudyog-  Meghdoot Madhu Shoonya Churan’ is misleading.

44.  L G Hair Beauty Centre:  Claims to ‘get rid of baldness in 2 hours.’

45.  Prince Pharma:  ‘2 Much breast capsule is useful  for  ‘twice efficacy and ‘make breasts attractive and feel beautiful.’

46.  Vee Excel Drugs & Pharma Pvt Ltd:  Obitek Herb Capsules  Claims that it can help you ‘reduce weight and maintain figure, burns harmful cholesterol content’.

47.  Krishna Kripa Industries:    Sugarnil Powder  Claims that it can controls sugar and get rid of its side effects on eyes, kidney, weakness of nerves, weak bones, calcium deficiency, pain,

numbness of hands and legs, fatigue, uninterested in working and generates new energy in the

body.

48.  Darling Buds Hair Transplant:  Claims  it is  India's largest hair restoration centre  with being  world pioneers in FUE,  doing the largest volume of FUE  hair transplants in Asia as a stand-alone clinic. It claims to be the ‘most trusted & respected world over’.

49.  Dr Anjali Shere Hair Science:  Claims  that the  robotic hair transplant technique has  100% perfection in the treatment  with  0% human error and doctor guided. It  gives genuine stamp paper guarantee’,  ‘5000 happy clients’  Ad using  images to justify the before and aft er results of the patient.

50.  Goodcare Pharma Pvt Ltd: Ezi Slim Slimming Tea burns excess fat, increases metabolism,  limits false hunger,  reduces transformation of carbohydrates to fats,  keeps the heart healthy,  100% natural and no side-effects.

51.  R.T.C.  Enterprises: Claims  that  Celebrity Lift  technique brings fairness of skin  and  promises to remove wrinkles and double chin.

52.  Diabetic Cell:  Claims  the cell to be  World's Safest Diabetic Treatment with a tag line saying ‘Eat what you love without a worry, 76% of our Diabetic patients are now happy.’

53.  Pappu Guptakrut Range of Products:  Claims  that the products  stop  hair breakage in 30 days. Within a course of 45 days, the products claimed to start growth of hair within 8-  20 days, stopping  baldness in 180 days’, growing  black hair from the roots  which has become white untimely, getting relief from dandruff in 3 days and completely rid of it in 20 days up till 10 years.

Dr. Shakti’s  Hair Harmony & You:  Claims  that it brings the breakthrough technique d-DHT for the 1st time in Mumbai. ‘Don't get conned, get genuine hair transplant HHY writes breakthrough technique d-DHT. ’

54.  Win Diabetes clinic: Claims  that  Lady fresh Gel  range of products helps  cure the looseness of vagina and whitens the area, works as a complete ayurvedic medicine to manage your private parts, made of pure ayurvedic medicines and is harmless

55.  Appropriate Miss Beauty Capsules:  Claims  that the capsules  are  the 1st in India as skin whiteners.  ‘The most trusted formula that blocks the formation of dark  pigmentation melanin’, the benefits claim to add permanently fairer and pinkish glow  to the skin  -  Lightening dark eye circle and spots, heal dark spots caused by Acne / Pimple  - Underarms / Bikini line will lighten.

56.  Vibgyor Clinic:  Claims  that the clinic could cure  sex problems which include permanent

treatment of nightfall, early fall, stress, semen in urine, indesire (in male or female),

physical/mental weakness, depression by Ayurvedic medicines,  joint pain  -  complete successful treatment of Arthritis, pain and swelling, spondylitis,  migraine by Ayurvedic medicines, successful treatment of psoriasis, white spots, eczema, pimples, wrinkles, and other skin diseases by Ayurvedic medicines.

57.  Somi’s Glow Plus Solution: Claims that Somi's has developed Glow Solution & Glow Plus Solution which  are special Ayurvedic solutions for hair growth whose results will  be shown  in only 3 months of proper application. Visuals of the TVC are misleading showing  Glow Solution & Glow Plus Solution to be catalysts for hair makeover. 

58.  Wet & Dry Personal Care Pvt Ltd:  Claims  that  Everteen  Vaginal Tightening  Gel  ‘helps  maintain vaginal health, tighten and revitalize  vagina, rejuvenates  vaginal muscles, tone and vigor in vagina, improves lubrication and reduce dryness, removes  vaginal harmful bacteria, restores post-delivery vaginal elasticity and enhances sexual pleasure’.

59.  Procter & Gamble Hygiene & Health Care Ltd:  Pantene Hair Fall Protection  sachet states that ‘Maa banne ka baad baal toh tut te hi hain!  Shampoo badal Pantene try kar.  Iska pro-V formula balon ka tutna kam aur unhe lamba banane me madad karein’.

60.  Relief Accupressure Clinic:  Claims  Dr Batras Homeopathic Clinic  to be a  successful treatment of each and every disease.  ‘6 lakh hair patients successfully treated’,  ‘90% hair patients will not change to any other brand for treatment  -  AC Nielsen study’,  ‘India's Only Trusted Homeopathy Brand - The Brand Trust Report, 2013’

61.  Dr Dilbagh Clinic:  Claims  assured treatment of mistakes of childhood, sexual weakness due   to sugar, premature ejaculation, under developed organ, urine disease, semen in urine, night fall, less sperm count, no physical development, not feeling hungry, no weight growth, no height growth and piles.’

62.  Sun Laboratories P Ltd:  Claims  that  Titanic  K2 Capsules  is the no.1 in power  capsules with 10 years of success,  100% Ayurvedic, correct treatment for excitement and energy.  ‘Feel energetic in just one capsule’,  ‘No side effect’

63.  Vee Excel Drugs & Pharma Pvt Ltd:  Claims  that  Vegafem  make breasts attractive, effective for treatment of flat chest, safe alternative to expensive surgery, stimulate  healthy breast growth, no flabby breasts, full, firm & younger looking cleavage, no scientific human hormones and completely herbal.

64.  Dewan Farms: Claims that it penetrates into the pores of the knees and stops the noise made by joints and makes grease. ‘Grease oil for knees.’

65.  Balaji Ayurved Sansthan:  Claims  that Bebo B C Capsule & Massage Oil  is  the    ‘Breast care capsule, tel and cream, No Side Effect’

66.  Prince Pharma :  Claims  that  CP Gold Capsule and Syrup  is used to improves the efficiency of organs by energizing it.

67.  Kaleesuwari Refinery Pvt Ltd:    Eldia  Enriched Hair Oil  has  natural UV protection. It is  enriched with virgin pomegranate seed oil, blue lotus  flower and tomato extracts, and natural Vitamin E in coconut oil that provides protection from harmful sun rays.

68.  Dabur India:  New Fem Anti Darkening  Hair Removal Cream  has a visual and mention of sandal. However, the product ingredient declaration  is misleading since it  does not have sandal in the ingredient list.

69.  Meck Pharmachem Ltd:  Claims  that  Glucomeck Tablets  is  the only alternative to operation  with ‘no side effects.’

70.  MOD Innovative Care:  Claims  that  their techniques help  get rid of baldness in 2 Hours.  ‘Do Comb, Shampoo, Color Etc. Note This Is Not A Wig’ and ‘Get Rid Of Obesity permanently.’

71.  B. Lab:  Claims  that using the  GLO Brightening Intense System  product  leads  to the  fairness of skin in human beings: and it promises to remove wrinkles and double chin, which is misleading. This advertisement is exploiting the vulnerable situation of people.

72.  Makewell Pharmaceutical:  Claims  that  use of  Speed Height Capsule  helps  increase  in  physical stature. 

73.  Janta Hospital: Claims that the hospital has 100% successful way and effective treatment for White Spots, oldest of the spots will get removed from its roots.

74.  Oshea Herbals : Claims that Oshea Herbals Hair Vitaliser prevents baldness.

75.  Libra Ayur Lab: Claims that Hairton Tablet stops hair fall and baldness.

76.  Dr. A K Jain Clinic:    Claims  that the clinic is no.1 in world's top 2  sexologists.  It has a  complete solution for sexual disease.

77.  B Lab Complaint:  Claims  that their product,  Pro Hair  makes an impression  & leads to  cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of Baldness in human beings.

78.  Lal kitab Amrit: Claims that ‘It is the key to success and can resolve any worry.’

79.  Tulsi Amrit Pvt Ltd:  Claims  that  Tulsi Amrit  is a very high result of their Ayurvedic preparation made from Tulsi plant by Anil Bansal, Vedic Upchar Sansthan.

80.  LÓreal India:  LÓreal Fall Repair  3x shampoo  TVC states, ‘Jadon me ho dum, to baal gire kum (Stronger the roots lesser the hair fall),  Asli mazbooti jadon se aati hai (real  strength comes from the roots), Kya apka shampoo deta hai jadon se mazboot baal? Mera deta hai (Does your shampoo strengthen from the roots? Mine does.)’

81.  Shreya Ayur  Clinic & Panchkarm Center:  Claims  that their techniques help in  100% successful treatment of white spots (Leucoderma).

82.  Ayurwin:    Nutri Slim Powder/Capsule ‘helps in melting the accumulated fat deposits’,  ‘turns the body's fat into energy’, ‘controls the body's cholesterol’ and is ‘safe as it is an herbal product’.

83.  Kunnath Pharmaceutical: Musli power  premium capsules  ‘reduces ageing  processes and ‘results starts within a week’.

84.  Hindustan Unilever Ltd: Claims that application of Dove Essential Nourishment Body Lotion  will have soft skin even after 10 days  of application.  It means that consumer  needs to apply the lotion only once and it gives soft skin for 10 days.

85.  Ayurvedic Amrut:  Claims  that  the product  is ‘100%  herbal medicines/products’, ‘cures  ‘White Patches’  immediately, ‘enhances  ‘memory ‘in 30 days’, cures  ‘piles’  of any variety permanently’, ‘cures  ‘Arthritis’  there by preventing surgery’, ‘prevents  ‘hair  fall’  completely’, ‘enhances hair growth’ and ‘reduces weight’.

86.  Reliant Aqua  Pvt Ltd:  Claims  that  Reliant Aqua  is  India’s  only one company who provides RO+UV+UF with pH Enhancer.

87.  Jalan Healthcare:  The advertisement is discriminatory, disrespectful and offensive towards women in general and to overweight women in particular. It shows women, especially obese ones, in poor light and appears to be mocking their looks.

88.  Branolia Chemical Works:  Claims  that  Branolia  is enriched with Brahmi Branolia for Memory & Health. It claims to develop intellect, cool, enhance memory.

89.  Dabur India Ltd:  New Fem Anti Darkening Hair Removal Cream’s  Claims that Fem Hair removal cream is the “First Hair removal cream that does not let your skin darken” and “Say no to skin darkening by Hair removal cream”.

90.  Vegan Skyshop: Shaktivardhan Vaccume Therapy and Oil’s  advertisement of this product/device makes an impression and it suggests & is calculated to lead to the use of such products as for the cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disorder/ condition of sexual impotence, premature ejaculation and spermatorrhoea and for the improvement in size and shape of the sexual organ, erectile disfunction & maintenance of erection of sexual organ in human being and thereby improvement of capacity of human beings for sexual pleasure.

91.  Omega Hospitals: The advertisement of this hospital claims  that at  ‘the end of 30-40 days  radiation’, ‘pain free’, ‘outpatient procedure’  and ‘patient can resume activity immediately after session.’

92.  Hindustan Unilever Ltd: Fair and Lovely Fairness Cream’s advertisement claims that it’s a ‘laser focus like fairness treatment. It’s  advanced pink formula targets melanin-  the pigmentation agent at its root and helps prevents skin from becoming darker.

 

HOMECARE

Hindustan Unilever  Ltd:  The TVC of  New Domex Zero Stain  claims that  “Zero Stain” with a super on it stating  –“refers to effective removal of commonly found toilet stains like lime scale and rust on regular usage (as per lab test)” thus creating a wrong impression that it removes all stains (100%). It then caveats itself with a super which contradicts the name clearly as it refers to only effective removal of commonly found toilet stains like lime scale and rust only. The antimicrobial test does  not cover the causative micro-organisms for  the diseases quoted in the TVC. The claim support data was not considered to be adequate to claim “zero” values in the context of the TVC. The decision of this complaint being UPHELD stands.

 

EDUCATION

The CCC found following claims in print ads by 25 different advertisers were not substantiated violating the ASCI Guidelines for Advertising of Educational Institutions and hence the complaints against the ads were UPHELD –

 

1.  IIB (Indian Institute of Banking):  Promises a bank job within 45 days.

2.  Think and Learn Pvt Ltd: Claims that  in BYJU Classes  one can ‘Get trained by India’s best trainers’,  ‘no one can do it better.’ It is ‘India’s leading aptitude trainer’.

3.  Alchemist: Claims  that it gives the ‘Best CAT Result in Delhi once again 1 in 7’, ‘the institute with highest percentage selections in CAT consistently for the 6th consecutive year.’

4.  Triumphant Institute of Management Education Pvt. Ltd:  T.I.M.E compares their number of admissions in CAT 2012 with that of their nearest competition in Gujarat (Endeavor)  without adequate substantiation.

5.  Info Edge (India) Ltd:  www.shiksha.com advertisement claims that  one can  ‘Get Info on IIM Distance MBA Now. Recognized by DEC, UGC. Enquire Now Shiksha.com/IIM+ Distance+ MBA’.

6.  Kish Cat Classes: Their advertisement claims to give  ‘Guaranteed admission in India's Top-20 best B-Schools.’  Vignana Jyothi Institute of Management, VKS College of Engg & Technology, College of Commerce, AIMS Education Campus, Bhai Gurdas Group of Institute, Fatima College of Engineering and Tech, Visskan Institute of Aviation Management, New Delhi Institute of Management, NCLP Computer Education, APG Shimla University, Sanjeevani Hospital, AICS (Academic Institute of Coaching & Studies), Takshshila Institute of Engineering and Technology, Rairangpur ITI/Baisingha ITI, Delhi Para Medical & Management Institute, Ambition Law Institute, RIMT Institutes, Bitcode Technologies Complaints against advertisements of  all above educational institutes were UPHELD because of unsubstantiated claims that they ‘provide 100% placement/AND/OR they claim to be the no.1 in their

respective fields’.

Think and Learn Pvt Ltd: The advertisement claims that  in BYJU Classes claims that  “By Serial CAT topper” which implies  that consecutively year after year Mr Byju is the CAT topper. “20,000 students are already learning from Byju across India for CAT making him India’s No.1 CAT Trainer” which implies that Byju is currently training 20,000 students. “An incredible 1200 students in every batch of BYJU” which implies that 1200 students are learning in every batch of BYJU. The CCC concluded that the claims that Byju is “Serial CAT topper” and “India’s No.1 CAT Trainer”  were not substantiated. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.1 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

CONSUMER DURABLES

Havells India Limited:  Havells Wires claims that they have ‘Wires that don’t catch fire’concluded that the claim “Wires that don’t catch fire” was not substantiated, and was misleading regarding the nature of the product i.e. it being fire proof. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and I.4 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Elgi Ultra Industries Limited:  Endura Pressure cookers  states  ‘Aluminium causes Alzheimer, Kidney Damage, Parkinson’s, Sclerosis, Dementia and Liver Damage.*  concluded that the claims that, “Aluminium causes Alzheimer’s’ disease, liver damage, Parkinson’s, Sclerosis, dementia”, were not substantiated and were misleading by gross exaggeration. Also, the  advertisement unfairly denigrated other products. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1, I.4 and IV.1 (e) of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Kent Ro System Ltd:  Kent  Mineral RO Water Purifier  claims that  it has  ‘Zero percent water wastage technology’, ‘retains essential minerals’, ‘100% purity’.  These claims are  not substantiated as the product water is less than input and report shows 50% water produced as product water from feed water. Nil drainage only means the waste water is retained inside the system temporarily in the tank for reject water and hence the said claim is misleading by ambiguity.  The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and I.4 of the Code. This complaint was UPHELD.

 

AUTO:

Bajaj Auto Ltd:  The  Bajaj Discover  TVC shows  the rider dangerously entering a small gap between two trailer trucks and he speeds and comes out.  It is a wrong driving practice to overtake another vehicle on the left side. It is potentially risky to enter between two vehicles The CCC concluded that the actions depicted in the TVC were dangerous. The advertisement contravened the Guidelines on Advertisements for Automotive Vehicles and minimum lettering size and duration requirement of ‘Supers’. The advertisement contravened Chapters III.3 and III.4 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

TELECOM

Tata Teleservices Ltd:  The advertisement of  Tata Docomo  depicts kids dancing in the ad in their bare minimums.  The CCC concluded that some frames in the TVC showing ‘scantily clad children’ objectify a child’s body, which is likely in the light of generally prevailing standards of decency and propriety, to cause grave offence. The advertisement contravened Chapter II of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

FOOD & BEVERAGES

The CCC concluded that the claims mentioned in these eight advertisements were not substantiated. The advertisements contravened ASCI’s Code. The complaints were UPHELD.

 

1.  Ankur Herbals Pvt Ltd:  Bherav Fast O Slim Herbal Tea claims that it is ‘Made from natural herbs, Fast o Slim keeps you  healthy, light and active’.  ‘Removes impurities from the blood and helps control your body weight and reduces excess fat’.

2.  GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare Ltd:  This  Horlicks  commercial is downgrading milk as a liquid with bad smell and giving a negative image of it to the children.

3.  Jolly Pharma:  The advertisement of  Jolly Fat Go  claims that ‘uncontrollable weight can be

controlled that too without dieting’.

4.  Ganesh Grains Limited:  The advertisement of  Ganesh Atta  claims that is a ‘healthier than ordinary flour and helpful for digestion.’

5.  Shudh Plus pan Masala:  The advertisement states that ‘chhotu’ is free with the shudh plus paan masala but does not describe chhotu which is in fact chewing tobacco. This paan masala company is giving a tobacco sachet free with the paan masala product. In India advertisement of tobacco products is illegal but the brand is openly advertising the product on FM radio and giving it for free.

6.  Saboo Sodium Chrolo Ltd:  Surya Namak  states that salt improves memory, and  that in  turn improves the grades in school.

7.  Gujarat Co-operative Milk Federation Ltd:    Amul Butter  claims that one can ‘eat milk with every meal, delight your health, eat milk with every meal and live every day, worry-free.’

8. Marico   Ltd: The advertisement of Saffola Total states that ‘Double ratio of 2 to 1 in antioxidants vs. olive oil.  The CCC concluded that the claim, ‘2 X double the antioxidant power than olive oil’, was inadequately substantiated. The context of using the comparison of antioxidant power along with the claim regarding benefits of antioxidants for heart was also misleading. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and 1.4 of the Code. This complaint was UPHELD.

 

OTHERS

Four Various Astrologers advertisements making misleading claims like:

1.  All India Open Challenge, 100% solution within 2 hrs for A to Z problems – Mirza Khan Bharti

2.  100% Solution within 7 hours. Come all your problems will be solved. – Baba Wasim Khan

3.  A to Z problems confirm solution with 2 hours 100% with guaranteed – Miyan Abdul Haeej

4.  If you are disappointed in business, domestic disturbance, love marriage, then come and get

101% solution in 5 hours – Baba Alam Shah

 

These  Astrology  ads spread  superstitious ideologies and practices such as Black Magic which are scientifically not proven. They cause  disappointment in the minds of consumers. The advertisement  contravened Chapters I.1 and I.5 of the ASCI Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Kalyan Jewellers:  The advertisement states that  ‘this is the result of Kalyan’s historical fight which  they fought against wrong deeds of many jewelers who have taken undue advantage of uneducated customers and have infringed their rights and committed fraud with their hard earned money ’.  The CCC concluded that the claims made in the advertisement were not substantiated. Also, the advertisement unfairly denigrates other jewelers by implication. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and IV.1 (e) of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Telemart Shopping Network Pvt. Ltd:  The advertisement of  Chole wale Hanuman Ji  shows some TV actors claiming that if they Buy the Chole wale Hanuman ji product, it would help the buyer to get rid of the all the problems in their life.  The CCC concluded that the claims in the TVC were not substantiated and were so exaggerated as to lead to grave or widespread disappointment in the minds of consumers. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and I.5 of the ASCI Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

xoxo skyshop.com: The advertisement is of ‘Suraksha K awach’, which  keeps you safe from black magic, ghosts, negative vibes, etc. The  CCC viewed the website content of the advertiser that hosts the product complained against. In absence of any substantiation, the complaint was  UPHELD as it violated Chapter I.1 of the ASCI code.

 

Olympia Incorporation: The advertisement of Mileage Plus claims that it can help ‘save petrol & increase your vehicle mileage up to 70%’, ‘increases average 25% to 70% (approx.)’, ‘increases power & performance of vehicle’, ‘reduces engine  noise & vibration’, ‘increasing burning efficiency’, ‘increasing engine oil life’, ‘proven results of mileage plus kits already installed.’  The CCC concluded that the claims made in the Ad were not substantiated. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.1  of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Pernod Ricard India P. Ltd:  The advertisement of  Seagram Imperial Blue  (in Bengali) shows two hands holding conch-shells touching each other (conch-shells are used while worshipping God by Hindus.) At the bottom of the hoarding ‘Ullash’ has been written, which means cheers. This is a surrogate ad for alcohol.  The CCC concluded that the Ad was a surrogate Ad for a liquor product  –  Seagram’s Imperial Blue, and contravened Chapter III.6 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Titan Industries Ltd: CCC reviewed the TVC and concluded that portion of the TVC showing three pairs of hands was implying indecent activity. This complaint was UPHELD  as the TVC contravened Chapter II of the ASCI code.

 

Taylor Devices India Pvt. Ltd:  The advertisement states, ‘Do you know when earthquake occurs in other countries (what happens to the building). Technology used on earthquake. Statement said in the ad: BIS code 1960 of Research & Technology used/mentioned.’ BIS trademark given is wrong. CCC reviewed the radio ad. CCC concluded that the claim of BIS standards not being updated since 1960 was not substantiated, and claim was misleading by omission. The advertisement contravened Chapters I.1 and I.4 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

www.firstcry.com:  The advertisement claims that ‘Everything at Rs. 1’. The CCC concluded that the claim –  offer of ‘Everything @ Re.1’, is misleading. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.4 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

 

Uptec:  The advertisement claims that it is the ‘Winner of Best Performance Award 2012’. The CCC concluded that the claim, ‘Winner of Best Performance Award 2012’, was not substantiated. The advertisement contravened Chapter I.1 of the Code. The complaint was UPHELD.

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AAP’s Delhi Power Policy: Higher benefits for the better-off?

The hard fact: those who consume 0-200 units would benefit by Rs170 per month at the most, or 25%. However, well-off household consuming 200-400 units are the real beneficiaries. They will enjoy upto 43% cut in their bill

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has delivered on its promise of reducing electricity rates by 50% within three days of assuming power in Delhi and made its implementation effective from 1 January 2014 for three months. Whereas in case of water, the route adopted by AAP was to cross-subsidize part of the population (read detailed analysis of impact of AAP’s water policy on different consumer classes here), in case of electricity, Delhi government has announced a budgetary subsidy to be paid to distribution companies (discoms) from Delhi exchequer as fixing power tariff comes under the purview of Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) and not the Delhi government. How does the subsidy affect the Aam Aadmi? It may surprise your to know that middle-class is a far bigger beneficiary of the power rate cut than the poorer sections.


Firstly, it has disappointed those who believed that reduction in electricity rates would be across-the-board and that it would be come from the discoms that are suspected to be fudging their accounts, even though AAP has also announced a move to begin audit of discom’s account books.

 

But the bigger question is as to how does this budgetary subsidy impact different consumer classes in Delhi? Is it a subsidy for the really poor or the middle class?  Also, what impact it may have on discom’s finances and government exchequer? Is it a prudent decision or it adds more fire to a ticking time-bomb?

The metered slab-wise energy charge for domestic consumers without subsidy, with subsidy applicable before the new order and current subsidy after the new order is given below. We have not considered consumers in other categories as present subsidy is not applicable to them.


The difference between old and new subsidy is that whereas earlier the applicable subsidy in 0-200 units was not applicable if consumption went beyond 200 units, now, consumers within 400 units consumption level would get benefit of subsidy in both slabs. There is a fixed charge levied as per the sanctioned load which is given in Table 1.2 on which no subsidy is applicable


Additionally, there is an 8% surcharge (levied on metered slab-wise energy charge and fixed charge net of subsidy) and 5% Electricity Tax (levied on final amount). There is one more charge -- Power Purchase Adjustment Charge (PPAC) -- which has been discontinued from 31st July 2013.

 

So, how does it change the billing for consumers at different consumption points? Below is the table (Table 1.3) and graph (Graph 1.1) for comparison. Also, BSES companies claim a cost of Rs7.40 per unit for supplying power in Delhi, but more on this later.
 


 

What are the conclusions from these tables and graph?

  • The subsidy in metered energy charge is indeed 50% when calculated from the base rate without taking earlier applicable subsidy into account
  • However, whereas, the earlier subsidy regime established a clear distinction between consumers in 0-200 and 200-400 units slab and gave more benefit to consumers in 0-200 units slab, such distinction is erased in the new subsidy regime. Consumers in both categories are considered eligible for progressively higher subsidy
  • As a result, consumers in the 0-200 units consumption category would get an additional benefit of Rs170 per month at the most which is less than 25% of their earlier bill. There is no 50% cut for them
  • However, households who consume more than 200 units but less than 400 units are the real beneficiaries of new subsidy regime whose bills would go down by 43%

 

Middle-class benefits more, not the poor

The question is: what kind of consumers consume up to 400 units of power in a month? Are they poor households or middle-class households, even assuming they are all Aam Admi? For an answer consider the table below (Table 1.4) of power consumption of different household appliances for a broadly representative household that may limit their consumption up to 400 units.



The purpose of this list is to indicate an approximate level of consumption. While care has been taken to source reliable wattage and consumption data, it should not be taken as precise depiction of consumption

 

Note that the list indicates that a household would be able to afford 1 AC of 1 Ton for cooling, geyser for heating water and yet limit their consumption within the 400-unit limit to gain from new subsidy regime. In our view, such consumption is possible for a middle-class household and is definitely not indicative of a poor household.

 

Our experience is that for four winter months in a year when air-conditioning is not required, middle-class households (who use more appliances like microwave oven, food processor, lot more lighting, washing machine, vacuum cleaners etc.) generally do not cross the 400-unit consumption threshold. It is a moot point whether such consumption pattern should be eligible for subsidy. Also, as per the ET report, this move is going to benefit ~80% of household with electricity connection. Again, it’s difficult to understand why the capital of India needs power subsidy for 80% of its population.

 

Due to middle-class activism, Delhi government had started providing subsidy from around April 2012 for 0-200 units slab and later announced it for 200-400 units slab as well. After the announcement of new tariff order by DERC for FY14, whereby rates were increased by 5%, such increase was made good to discoms by Delhi government by increasing quantum of subsidy (from Rs1 to Rs1.20 in Aug 2013) and therefore there was no impact in billed rates to consumers for consumption up to 400 units. Given this background and widespread support to AAP by middle-class, it is not surprising that Kejriwal has taken care of this constituency by bringing in new subsidy regime. 
 

But what are the implications for this giveaway to the better-off middle-class at the macro level? That will be in the second part of the analysis

(Vivek Khaitan is an MBA from IIM Calcutta and is working as a management consultant for past five years in New Delhi)

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COMMENTS

Ashok Kumar Rastogi

5 years ago

Reduction in tariff is because of subsidy not because of the Hera feri in account as claimed by Kejriwal.It is to be seen how AAP would arrange subsidy . Either they have to raise taxes or borrow from central govt. What AAP claimed in their manifesto that they would catch the corruption of discoms & bring down the rates. AAP is inhurry to reduce rate as populist measure through which many parties like cong,bjp have been doing.He should have given almost free power to poors who live in one room & use only one bulb & one fan i.e. up to 50 units per month.

REPLY

Dayananda Kamath k

In Reply to Ashok Kumar Rastogi 5 years ago

it is biggest curruption by a party which took birth from india against curruption. it is bribe given to voters if congress were not to support confidence motion. so there is nothing different in aap it is on among the aam parties.

MOHAN

5 years ago

A A P has only one Policy - "Power".

Dayananda Kamath k

5 years ago

you have ignored one more aspect many a times there wil be submeters 2 to 3 in each metre becasue of renting out. and actually many who are tenents who deserve but will not get it as combined bill will show more than 400 units. further earlier his argument was that due to curuption and connivance of congress govt electricity charge are high. but now by giving subsidy he has justified the higher rate. he is more dangerous politician than all prevailing now.

REPLY

rajivahuja

In Reply to Dayananda Kamath k 5 years ago

This precise practice is used by the landlords

Rita Krishna

5 years ago

Another excellent article. Look forward to the sequel. When electricity bills in Delhi are higher than they are in Zurich (my source is a friend in New Rajinder Nagar, but fact could easily be verified), then it does seem that the entirety of the middle class SHOULD benefit. This and the water article have illumined the complexity that exemplifies day to day Delhi life.

As a principle, would you not agree that any tariff system should be simple, both to understand and to administer? Otherwise in the name of meeting the needs of ever more artificially created segments of population you set up bureaucratic edifices to check bills while having no-one, apparently (from water article), to either repair or check meters.

REPLY

Vivek Khaitan

In Reply to Rita Krishna 5 years ago

I completely agree with the principle that unwarranted complexity in the system increases inspector raj.

Any dent in corruption that AAP may wish to make would necessarily have to be anchored in reducing complexities, reducing discretionary power of officials. It needs to be anchored in large governance reforms. Even the idea of Lokpal which made them into heroes is not a great idea because this institution would be reactive and not pro-active to attack the source/incentive structure of corruption

Rita Krishna

In Reply to Vivek Khaitan 5 years ago

The reason I think they are right is that it appears that, setting the question of who is being subsidised aside, this step does actually reducie the numbers of separate possible categories of bill - it creates a larger middle category, does it not? This is then leading to interesting questions in the private rented sector about the behaviour of private landlords to their tenants. It is like the layers of an onion! Is it the responsibility of government to make private landlords behave responsibly towards their tenants? Or should the landlord pass on the benefits anyway? Look forward to your next piece. In my opinion large scale governance reforms could very well have less impact than this incremental approach.

Abhijit Gosavi

In Reply to Rita Krishna 5 years ago

Large-scale governance reforms could have less impact than this incremental approach? I think there is no evidence in economics (anywhere in the world) to support that argument. Reminds me of V.P. Singh who had inspired us as teenagers, only to disappoint very badly later.

Look at all those folks entering AAP today. A danseuse who considers GDP to be of little significance for a nation's future; a failed businessperson who bankrupted airline firms; an opportunist who was an "independent" politician for so long; an academic with almost no background in economics but claiming to be an adviser on everything under the sun.

R Varadarajan

5 years ago

Reduction of any charge through subsidy is nothing but juggling of accounts and will not provide any solution in the long term. I would have admired AAP had they promissed to enforce discipline, transperancy and improve efficiency in the EB to provide power at cost+ x% ( to cover the future capital expenses,besides fixed costs and oil prices) instead of blind offer of 50% ( which also comes through subsidy ) This is nothing but tempting the public with some sort of of bribe. It is an irony that the party wanting to eradicate bribe has come to power through bribing people. Thye are enalrging the options with new reservations, and others. This indicates that AAP has arrived in the Political arena and are not much different from others.

REPLY

Rita Krishna

In Reply to R Varadarajan 5 years ago

I fail to see how it is a bribe, to offer hard-pressed consumers some immediate relief, while in parallel working out the best means of 'enforcing discipline, transparency etc.' Those are words which are easy to say, and moreover to appear to be doing something. What they have done is very concrete.

Dayananda Kamath k

In Reply to Rita Krishna 5 years ago

it is just like colour tv, laptop, cooker etc announcing these things in election is bribing the voters only and today we are seing the result of these feebees. we elect people to mainain law and order and not to indulge in such gimmicks.

Rita Krishna

In Reply to Dayananda Kamath k 5 years ago

They are in government and have implemented a policy which i believe is offering relief to hard pressed consumers - month on month, not a one-off TV or something like that. Cost of living is an economic concern - or not?

Rita Krishna

In Reply to Dayananda Kamath k 5 years ago

Of course law and order is a matter for government but so is cost of living and hundreds of other things.

Dayananda Kamath k

In Reply to R Varadarajan 5 years ago

all these half hearted moves are taken in a hurry to ensure themselves reelection if congress do not support their confidence motion and reelection were to be held. this is biggest curruption by a party which came to politics with lokpal.

Yerram Raju Behara

In Reply to R Varadarajan 5 years ago

I fully agree Mr Varadarajan. By agreeing to provide subsidy the AAP conceded to the pricing of the previous government that carried with it all the leakages and outages. It is necessary to reduce the costs of delivery and reduce the price per se as a reform measure. Does not matter if AAP govt takes a little more time to do such exercise. It is worthwhile examining whether every dwelling unit should have independent meters instead of sub-meters when it would be possible for any concessionary or regulatory measure can easily be taken care of better. Further, most houses use non-standard electrical wires and switches and switch boards as also main switches. By adopting standard electric ware and having a plan for modification, transmission leakages can be arrested. The costs incurred for this purpose can be subsidized by the Government to the extent feasible. This subsidy would add efficiency to the system on a permanent basis. Sale of non-standard items should be banned legally by amending the State Acts.

R Varadarajan

In Reply to Yerram Raju Behara 5 years ago

Yes I agree. It is important that the Govt Looks at cutting the losses at every stage - by replacing Transformers, and Cables, besides maintining the transformers periodically. They should also spend money on replacing the meters and providing digital meters to all tenants. In fact, it would be worthwhile long term measure to improve efficiency and recovery, instead of draining the Govt funds by way of subsidies

Vivek Khaitan

In Reply to R Varadarajan 5 years ago

One of the reasons that politicians encourage this subsidy culture is the rewards they reap due to immense attraction of freebies in our society. Like any other human being, politicians respond to the way their incentives are structured.

True that such subsidies are more of account juggling and at best a short-term palliative with deleterious long-terms consequences

MOHAN

5 years ago

AAM ADMI PARTY or AMIR ADMI PARTY?

Are Mr. Balakrishnan (INFOSYS) and Captain Gopinath AAM ADMI?

Shivangni Sharma

5 years ago

Well at least some people are not swayed by the half baked, ill thought out populist promises of this new kid in town.

I hope the scales fall off the eyes of rest of the intelligentsia and media soon or we might see instability or worse communists as our rulers.

Dr Paresh Vaidya

5 years ago

The source of anomaly such that the upper middle class and rich benefits more from AAP's new tariff stems from the fact that they have broadened the concessions upto 400 Units. Poor man uses less than 100 units and middle class should be upto 180 units. Anyone using more electricity than this is using sophisticated gadgets beyond the reach of 'common man'. As a wise energy policy concession should not be extended to those who consume large amount.

(Incidentally the debate so far on this page seems to be political than economic.)

MOHAN

5 years ago

.

AAP's "power" policy itself is defective in a democratic country as its leadership is a secret society. Now they are panning to contest Lok Sabha elections. Only God knows whether AAP supports Congress or not after the Lok Sabha elections.

Are Kejriwal & Co., Congress 'B' team?



Yerram Raju Behara

5 years ago

Leave off the party leanings. How do these measures measure up to the electoral promises? AAP delivered its promise. The implications will come to a cross during the course of implementation. When the State Budget goes for a toss, the real economics will come to play. You have to rob the Paul to pay the Peter if distributive justice has to play its part sooner than later. The rich would have to pay - the middle class of which so much noise is made have always been at the worst paying end. The rich get away with their ability to bear the burden; the poor have the subsidies with no income tax to pay as they are within the threshold level; it is the middle class who pay all taxes and cess. I do not see any reason for the growl when they get a cake of what they pay through their other valet.

NARENDRA GUPTA

5 years ago

Whatever given in the Article is Fact, But this may not be intentional. Arvind Kejriwal is really a person with High integrity. Give him sometime to rectify these errors.

REPLY

MOHAN

In Reply to NARENDRA GUPTA 5 years ago

What integrity Mr. Gupta?

How did he become the CM of Delhi?

Ashish Singh

In Reply to MOHAN 5 years ago

He became CM becoz people wanted so.

MOHAN

In Reply to Ashish Singh 5 years ago

Which people ? CONGRESS PEOPLE?

Abhijit Gosavi

In Reply to NARENDRA GUPTA 5 years ago

Intention is not everything! Well-meaning policies often produce the opposite effect: increase corruption and poverty. Eliminating loopholes and red tape helps reduce corruption. But hiring 40 additional "anti-corruption" officers doesn't! Surely, those officers could themselves become corrupt?

But, it's been a while since AK took a basic course on engineering economics at the IIT. My fear is he doesn't read: which country pursuing leftist economic policies has prospered?

And who is Mr YY? What are his credentials on economics? How come he's your economic advisor? He is not going to let you fix any errors!

Saddest thing, though, is the latest double talk on evidence related to Sheila D. And you are fighting corruption?

Amith

5 years ago

Again moneylife comes up with a nice analysis and shows the facts. AAP is just like BJP/Congress. I believe we need 'Poor' aadmi party now, anyone up for grabs?

REPLY

uttamkumar dubey

In Reply to Amith 5 years ago

yes you can leave your job and replace kejriwal.i cannot do thats y asking.
But gauze urself before commenting on kejriwal otherwise CONG-BJP wont let u live/breath.

Abhijit Gosavi

In Reply to uttamkumar dubey 5 years ago

The article is about an AAP policy which appears to be economically flawed. Great article, btw, and look forward to the next part.

Eajaz Hussain

5 years ago

we all know Money Life is PRO BJP, kindly dont stoop so low, if you wish to highlight, please do write to them AAP of the apprehensions you had mentioned, then based on their response, do comment. It will be a trust worthy behaviour.

REPLY

uttamkumar dubey

In Reply to Eajaz Hussain 5 years ago

BJP will make Moneylife financial adviser or so? so we will be safe from SEBI /NSE-BSE and UID.

Suiketu Shah

In Reply to Eajaz Hussain 5 years ago

After elections you wl have to say whole India is pro-BJP!lol

Ashish Singh

5 years ago

May I know ur political inclination and OR affiliation ;)

REPLY

Sachin

In Reply to Ashish Singh 5 years ago

How does political inclination matters in bringing facts with data. Did you do your maths before commenting ? If the above data in article is wrong then post it here and then argue.

Ashish Singh

In Reply to Sachin 5 years ago

Higher benefits for the better-off?
To me it seems like comparing ,
Get 10% off on purchase up to Rs 10K and 15% off on purchase more than 10K.

The greater you spend, may or will result in greater saving.

Vivek Khaitan

In Reply to Ashish Singh 5 years ago

And nothing off if you spend more than 20K :)

I don't think it ever occurred to anyone that the policy was designed to enhance consumption :)

Abhijit Gosavi

In Reply to Sachin 5 years ago

Authors seeking to avoid questions about political inclinations should end like this:

This is a big blow to Modi!!! ;)

Vivek Khaitan

In Reply to Abhijit Gosavi 5 years ago

Ha ha ha.. I was thinking of declaring my political inclination as Zionist neo-con fundamentalist! Putatatively, that would put the article beyond the pale of rational discussion :)

sreenath

In Reply to Ashish Singh 5 years ago

sathyacumaran
operational head india
singapore media and channel group
its not the political inclination or affliation as far moenylife is concerned they analyse the situation with full facts and figures and bring out in their website and pass to memebers like us and we should encourage the boldness of moenylife in the goonda based indian political system where we jorunalist are threatened more frequently we really appreciate the boldness of susheta dalal she is not going to achieve anything form this infact if she soft peddalas you said to which policitcal party she can very live and luxurious life without any threat or any fear please support the insitution hats off to madam

Narain Jagirdar

In Reply to Ashish Singh 5 years ago

How does that matter?
He has analysed and placed the facts.

Ashish Singh

In Reply to Narain Jagirdar 5 years ago

Higher benefits for the better-off?
To me it seems like comparing ,
Get 10% off on purchase up to Rs 10K and 15% off on purchase more than 10K.

The greater you spend, may or will result in greater saving.

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