Patanjali misleading ads case: ’You do exactly the same thing...,’ Supreme Court slams IMA

  • Supreme Court reprimands Indian Medical Association and its President for criticizing court orders and Patanjali's ad campaign. Court emphasizes self-restraint in free speech and criticizes IMA President for lack of discretion in interviews.

First Published14 May 2024
Supreme Court pulled up the IMA President Dr RV Asokan in Patanjali ad case
Supreme Court pulled up the IMA President Dr RV Asokan in Patanjali ad case(Hindustan Times)

The Supreme Court of India on Tuesday came down heavily on the Indian Medical Association during the case related to Patanjali's misleading ad campaign.

The apex court also pulled up the IMA President Dr RV Asokan for giving an interview to the press on the Supreme Court's orders in the case.

"You do exactly the same thing Patanjali did. You are not a layman, don't you know the consequences of such things? You can't sit on your couch lamenting the order of the court," the bench told Asokan.

Patanjali misleading ads case: SC reserves order on contempt plea against Ramdev

"We are the first ones to uphold the freedom of free speech. But there are times when there should be self-restraint. As IMA President, you should have had self-restraint. That's the point. We didn't see that in your interviews," said the bench.

It further told Asokan, "Dr. Asokan, you are also a citizen of this country. The amount of criticism judges face, why don't they react? Because personally we don't have much of an ego, we are magnanimous. We are entitled to take action, but very rarely we do. We do that seldom... We use our discretion with some sense of responsibility. But that does not mean you go to town with this kind of comments."

Patanjali case: IMA chief's comments on top court 'unacceptable', says SC

Asokan, in an interview, had said that it was unfortunate that the Supreme Court criticised the practice of IMA and private doctors.

Patanjali had filed an application against the IMA president asking the bench to take judicial notice of "wanton and unwarranted comments" made by Asokan.

After Patanjali, SC rebukes other makers, endorsers of deceptive health ads

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court reserved its order in a contempt of court case against Patanjali Ayurved, yoga guru Baba Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna.

A bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Ahsanuddin Amanullah also dispensed with the personal appearance of Patanjali Ayurved's founders, Ramdev and Balkrishna.

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