Ads for Fairness Cream May Get Rs 50 Lakh Fine, 5 Yr Jail Time
The government proposes a bill with heavy jail time and fines to reduce the promotion of fairness creams.
Fairness cream advertisers, actors and promoters beware! Endorsing these problematic products may come at a harsh price now.
In a recent notice by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the proposed amendments to the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954, such as a penalty of Rs 50 lakh and jail time of up to 5 years.
This is being done, the notice reads, to “keep pace with changing time and technology."
The government will be accepting suggestions from the public and stakeholders on the amendments for 45 days.
Besides fairness creams, advertisers/actors have to be wary of promoting pharmaceutical products to treat a wide gamut of health issues such as deafness, diseases of the uterus or breast, hair loss or greying, obesity, AIDS among 78 others. Under the new proposal, advertisements relating to these will all be prohibited.
The Logical Indian reported that the bill draft proposes:
- For the first offence, a fine of up to Rs 10 lakh and up to two years' imprisonment.
- For the second offence, a fine of up to Rs 50 lakh and up to 5 years imprisonment.
What Does the Current Law Say?
Under the current law, for the first offence, there is up to 6 months imprisonment without fines. For a second conviction, it’s imprisonment for up to a year.
It also recognises magic remedies like mantras, talismans, charms that claim to cure diseases.
(With inputs from The Logical Indian )
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