The Information and Broadcasting Ministry is contemplating strong action against tobacco and liquor companies indulging in 'surrogate' advertising in print, electronic and outdoor media.
This assurance was given to Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss by Information and Broadcasting Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi recently.
The Health Minister had recently written to the Information and Broadcasting Ministry seeking action against companies like Bagpiper soda, Johnny Walker soda and Kingfisher mineral water, saying they were using surrogate methods of advertising, which needed to be stopped.
"Though the Information and Broadcasting Ministry has not given us any written reply, the Minister has verbally assured me that action would be taken against such companies," Ramadoss told PTI.
The letter said that these products have exactly the same brand name and logo which had earlier been there in the liquor ads.
"The companies are thus trying to by-pass the advertisement ban on liquor products already in place," it said.This is in breach of government banning ads of cigarettes and other tobacco products as well as wine, alcohol and other intoxicants considering the ill-effects of these products.