A month after it released a comparative advertisement for its fairness cream Fair & Lovely Anti-marks, Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) has been taken to court. The FMCG major has been served a legal notice by Ozone Ayurvedics, makers of Nomarks anti-marks cream, one of the brands compared in the HLL ad. FE was the first to report that Ozone was planning legal action against HLL.
The legal notice dated December 21 has accused HLL of making false claims in the advertisement that was released on November 28, 2004. The ad in question claims greater efficacy of its brand Fair & Lovely over competing brands Nomarks and Garnier’s Light. The conclusion is based on a study conducted on a sample of 30 women for each of the creams. An HLL spokesperson, when contacted, said the company had received the legal notice on Monday.
As per the notice, Ozone has alleged that the ad in question contains disparaging statements about its brand Nomarks and has asked the company to retract the ad by giving an ad tendering apology for alleged misleading claims.
The comparison in the ad, Ozone has said, not only disparages Nomarks “but is also based on totally false and unreliable facts and figures which are completely devoid of any truth and are self contradictory in nature.”
In its notice, Ozone has also asked HLL to pay damages of Rs 15 lakh on account of the harm of goodwill and reputation to its brand Nomarks.