The State Licensing Authority (SLA), Ayurveda and Unani Services, Uttarakhand, as well as the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA), have taken a firm view on five advertisements placed by Patanjali Ayurveda that promised to treat blood pressure, diabetes, goitre, high lipid levels and glaucoma.
The products are BPgrit, Madhugrit, Thyrogrit, Lipidom and Eyegrit tablets. The SLA asked Divya Pharmacy, the marketing arm of Patanjali Ayurved, on September 7 to remove the advertisements from the media and submit an explanation within a week. The CCPA noted on September 22 that the matter relates to public health and is in violation of the Sections 3 (d) and 106 (1) of the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, 1954, and Schedule J of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, and the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945. The authority also forwarded the complaint to the Union Ministry of Ayush for further action.
Drug laws violated
This is based on complaints by Kannur-based ophthalmologist K.V. Babu. Divya Pharmacy had told the government authorities in May this year that it would stop releasing advertisements on its products that promised to treat heart and liver disorders. This was based on another complaint filed by Dr. Babu in February. The Union Ayush Ministry too had pointed out in March that the ads on Lipidom, Livogrit, and Livamrit had violated provisions of the country’s drug laws.
“Though the company had promised to remove the adverts, it came up with a new set of commercials again, which forced me to file the complaints with both the Union Consumer Affairs Ministry and the SLA of Uttarakhand in July,” he said.