Patanjali's Baba Ramdev To Face Supreme Court Today Over Alleged Contempt In Ad Row

The Supreme Court has summoned yoga guru Baba Ramdev and Patanjali Ayurved’s MD Acharya Balkrishna for April 2, requiring them to explain why they should not face contempt charges for allegedly defying court orders banning disease-curing advertisements and discrediting modern medicine.

What to know: A bench led by Justices Hima Kohli and Ahsanuddin Amanullah highlighted Patanjali’s disregard for a February 27 directive, which demanded a halt to such contentious advertisements, notably those featuring Ramdev.

The justices remarked that these ads directly contradicted Patanjali’s earlier commitment to abstain from making health cure claims in their marketing efforts.

Acharya Balkrishna had last month apologised to the Supreme Court for the misleading ads although we’ve heard nothing from Baba Ramdev on the matter so far.

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Why it matters: This legal stir stems from a petition by the Indian Medical Association (IMA), accusing Patanjali of making false claims about curing diseases and undermining allopathic medicine.

Despite defence arguments that the law’s breach does not equate to contempt, the bench emphasized the universal applicability of the 1954 Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act, which bans ads promoting cures for lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart conditions.

The apex court’s frustration was also directed at the Central Government for its delayed response in the matter, warning of decisive action if the forthcoming answers remain unsatisfactory. This case opens a significant dialogue on the intersection of traditional Indian practices and modern medical regulations.

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