Delhi HC asks Bharti Airtel to tweak its ‘T20 cricket Live and Free’ ad
New Delhi: The Delhi high court on Tuesday asked Bharti Airtel to tweak its ‘T20 cricket Live and Free’ advertisement so that a disclaimer on certain hidden costs are written in bold, and comply with a 13 April order passed by it.
On 13 April, justice Yogesh Khanna had directed Bharti Airtel to modify, as in an interim measure, the ‘T20 cricket Live and Free’ advertisement to the extent of making the information on data consumption cost more prominent.
The court was hearing a contempt plea moved by Reliance Jio Infocomm against Bharti Airtel for alleged non-compliance of the 13 April order.
P. Chidambaram appearing for Bharti Airtel stated that the there had been no instance of non-compliance on behalf of Airtel and submitted a “compliance affidavit” to the court.
Reliance Jio had moved the high court on 13 April against Bharti Airtel’s ‘T20 cricket Live and Free’ advertisement, alleging that the advertisement was misleading and deceptive as it failed to inform consumers about the hidden costs.
Abhishek Manu Singhvi appearing for Reliance Jio had claimed that the Airtel’s claim of providing access to all Indian Premier League (IPL) matches “live and free” was not true as a user had to pay for the data consumed for streaming the matches by subscribing to one of the data plans starting from Rs399 for 20 GB data per month.
Singhvi had further argued that the disclaimer that follows the advertisement, stating that “date consumption will be charged as per the existing plan”, went beyond clarifying or expanding the “main message” and contradictied the message perceived by a viewer.
Bharti Airtel had clarified that ‘free and live’ in the advertisement referred to a free subscription to online streaming platform Hotstar, and not data consumed. It was argued that the fact that users had to pay for data consumption was already stated in the advertisement.
The case will be next heard on 27 April.