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Dabur files contempt petition against Emami

09-June-2004
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Dabur files contempt petition against Emami

Dabur India Ltd on Tuesday filed a contempt petition in the Delhi High Court against Emami Ltd and three of its officials for failing to withdraw the `Himani Sona-Chandi Amritprash' advertisement from television channels despite a May 28 HC order to that effect.

In today's petition, Dabur has requested the HC to seek from Emami and its officials "to show cause as to why proceedings for contempt of this honourable court and the orders passed by it be not initiated against them for having continued with the telecast of the impugned TV commercial on May 30, 2004, and May 31, 2004, in contravention of the order of this Honourable Court on May 28."

Dabur has also sought that the court issue further directions to Emami for discontinuing the ad and "punish the respondents in accordance with law."

On May 28, the Delhi HC had allowed injunction application filed by Dabur alleging that Emami's TV commercial starring Bollywood actor Sunny Deol was disparaging and had directed Emami to refrain from broadcasting this ad.

The Court had upheld Dabur's contention that Emami commercial showing Chyawanprash as "bad for use in summers" was "disparaging." Dabur had contended that Emami's TV commercial using the phrase, `Forget Chyawanprash in summers, eat Amritprash instead,' was disparaging as it was a negative campaign with an effort to "insinuate" its product.

Emami's contention that Chyawanprash was a generic word and there was no exclusivity, which could be claimed by Dabur was rejected by the Court. Emami had submitted that there was no malice or malafide intention in the commercial.

Meanwhile, armed with the May 28 order restraining Emami from telecasting the TV commercial, Dabur has also written to several television channels asking them to stop airing the "disparaging" advertisement.

However, when contacted, Director with the Emami Group of Industries, Mr Aditya Agrawal, said the company had no knowledge of any fresh petition filed against it by Dabur, while adding "the Sona Chandi Amritprash ad has been withdrawn about a week or 10 days back so where is the question of contempt of the HC order?"

Mr Agrawal said Emami would be appealing against the HC order restraining the telecast of this advertisement on June 12. Claiming that the increasing sales of Himani Sona Chandi Chyawanprash within the last three years had hurt those of Dabur Chyawanprash, he said, "Our Chyawanprash has already cornered 15 per cent market share."

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