“You’re Not So Innocent”: Supreme Court Asks Baba Ramdev To Issue Public Apology In Patanjali Ads Case

Business Edited by Updated: Apr 16, 2024, 2:19 pm
“You’re Not So Innocent”: Supreme Court Asks Baba Ramdev To Issue Public Apology In Patanjali Ads Case

“You’re Not So Innocent”: Supreme Court Asks Baba Ramdev To Issue Public Apology In Patanjali Ads Case (image-X/iamharmeetK)

The Supreme Court stated that it will not let Patanjali “off the hook” at this stage, giving a week’s time to co-founders Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balakrishna to publicly apologize for publishing misleading advertisements that claimed to treat certain diseases and criticize allopathy.

Baba Ramdev, co-founder of Patanjali Ayurved Ltd., along with Managing Director Acharya Balkrishna, appeared before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, expressing unconditional apologies for publishing misleading advertisements and making disparaging comments against allopathic medicines in breach of a previous undertaking given to the Court.

The bench, comprising Justices Hima Kohli and Ahsanuddin Amanullah, was presiding over the contempt case against Patanjali Ayurved Ltd., Acharya Balkrishna, and Baba Ramdev concerning misleading advertisements.

Coming down heavily on the multinational conglomerate, the Court said, “We have not decided whether to forgive you or not. You have violated (directives) three times. The earlier orders are under our consideration. You are not so innocent that you did not know what”s happening in court,” as quoted by NDTV.

During the hearing, the bench directly engaged with Ramdev and Balkrishna, questioning why they violated the undertaking previously given to the Court. Ramdev acknowledged the lapse, stating, “What we did at that point in time should not have been done. It happened on impulse. We will not do so in the future.” Balkrishna also admitted, “We should not have done it.”

Representing Patanjali, Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi informed the Court that they are prepared to issue a public apology to demonstrate contrition. The bench, considering their remorseful stance, adjourned the hearing until April 23 to allow them time to rectify their actions.

Earlier, the Court rejected two apology affidavits from Patanjali MD, noting that they were not unqualified. Furthermore, the Court criticized Ramdev and Balkrishna for submitting an affidavit with fabricated flight tickets to avoid a personal appearance before the Court.

In addition to the contempt case, the Court also censured Uttarakhand State authorities for failing to take action against Patanjali under the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act 1954.

The petition that initiated these proceedings was filed by the Indian Medical Association against Patanjali”s advertisements criticizing allopathic medicine and claiming cures for certain diseases. The Division Bench had previously issued a contempt notice to Patanjali Ayurved and its management over the continuous publication of misleading ads, despite assurances given to the Court in November last year.