Government proposes Rs 50 lakh fine, 5-year imprisonment for advertising fairness creams

The proposed rules would be drafted under the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) (Amendment) Bill, 2020

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Feb 7, 2020 9:49 AM

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Ministry of Health and Family Welfare

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has proposed to amend the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954. The new rules would be drafted under Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) (Amendment) Bill, 2020.

According to reports, enablers, including actors and promoters pharmaceutical products for fairness of skin, deafness, improvement of height, hair loss or greying, obesity, among others can face a maximum of Rs 50 lakh fine and jail time of 5 years, while first-time offenders may receive a Rs 10 lakh fine and up to two years' imprisonment.

Reports state that the notice issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said that the proposed amendments are "in order to keep pace with changing time and technology."

The Ministry also proposes to expand the definition of an advertisement to "any audio or visual publicity, representation, endorsement or pronouncement made by means of light, sound, smoke, gas, print, electronic media, internet or website and includes any notice, circular, label, wrapper, invoice, banner, poster or such other documents: Provided that label or wrapper is an advertisement only if it contains any information or claim other than provided in the rules ".

The Ministry has asked for suggestions, comments or objections from the public or stakeholders with regard to the said draft Bill.

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