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Govt proposes 5-year jail, Rs 50-lakh fine for ads promoting fair skin

The ministry of health and family welfare has finalised Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) (Amendment) Bill, 2020, which increases the number of diseases and disorders covered under the Act.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Feb 06, 2020, 11.57 PM IST
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The legislation bans advertisements of products and magic remedies which claim to cure diseases and disorders like AIDS, diabetes, deafness and low vision. This list has been increased from 54 to 78.
NEW DELHI: Advertisements promoting fairness creams, health drinks claiming improvement in height of children and products promoting antiageing remedies could soon be banned and attract a jail term extending up to five years.

The ministry of health and family welfare has finalised Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) (Amendment) Bill, 2020, which increases the number of diseases and disorders covered under the Act.

The legislation bans advertisements of products and magic remedies which claim to cure diseases and disorders like AIDS, diabetes, deafness and low vision. This list has been increased from 54 to 78.

The draft amendment bans advertisements of products that promote fairness creams, enhance sexual performance, cure premature ageing and greying of hair, improvement in height of children or adults, increase in brain capacity and memory, improvement in strength of teeth and vision, change of foetal gender by drugs.

Under Section 7 of the Act, the first conviction is punishable with imprisonment of up to six months or fine or both; and a subsequent conviction can result in imprisonment of up to a year or fine, or both.

The amendment proposes to increase the penalties. For the first conviction, the proposed punishment is imprisonment of up to two years and fine up to Rs 10 lakh. For subsequent conviction, the imprisonment may extend to five years with a fine of up to Rs 50 lakh.
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