The Supreme Court has cautioned Patanjali Ayurved, a company co-founded by yoga guru Ramdev, against making false and misleading claims about its medicines in advertisements. The court has warned that it will take any such infractions very seriously. The caution came during a hearing of a plea filed by the Indian Medical Association (IMA), which alleged that Patanjali Ayurved was running a smear campaign against the vaccination drive and modern medicines.
The bench comprising justices Ahsanuddin Amanullah and Prashant Kumar Mishra asked Patanjali Ayurved to immediately stop publishing misleading claims and advertisements against modern systems of medicine. The court also mentioned that it may consider imposing a fine of Rs 1 crore on every product if a false claim is made about its ability to cure a particular ailment.
The Supreme Court also requested the counsel representing the Centre to find a solution to the issue of misleading medical advertisements that make claims about medicines offering a perfect cure for certain diseases. The plea filed by the IMA will be heard by the bench on February 5 next year.
The bench, headed by the then Chief Justice NV Ramana, expressed its respect for Ramdev as a popularizer of yoga but criticized his criticism of other medical systems. The bench questioned the guarantee that Ayurveda, the system followed by Ramdev, would work and raised concerns about the advertisements that accused doctors of being killers.
The IMA had presented several advertisements that allegedly portrayed allopathic doctors in a negative light, claiming that firms producing ayurvedic medicines were misleading the public. These advertisements suggested that medical practitioners were dying despite taking modern medicines. The IMA argued that there was a concerted effort to discourage vaccinations, including the COVID-19 jab drive, and the use of allopathic medicines in the country.
(Note: This article has been rewritten and adapted from a syndicated feed without any editing by NDTV staff.)