ASCI seeks modification/ withdrawal of IPL promo featuring Dhoni as a driver

Times of India, April 06, 2022

Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) has asked the Indian skipper Premier League (IPL) to withdraw a promotional advertisement featuring former Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

The council recommended this after a road safety organization lodged a complaint citing the promo glorifying violation of traffic rules.

The complaint was filed by Consumer Unity and Trust Society (CUTS) against the promotional advertisement which shows Dhoni in the role of a bus driver stopping the bus in the middle of a very busy road. The advertisement shows that when a traffic policeman arrives at the scene and questions Dhoni’s actions, he responds saying that they are watching the “Super Over” of an IPL match. The traffic policeman treats this as a normal occurrence during IPL and drives away.

The ASCI, which is a voluntary industry body, took cognisance of the complaint of the promo justifying the gross violation of traffic rules. Subsequently, the Consumer Complaints Committee CCC) members of the council watched the advertisement with the representative of the company which had made the promo.
The ASCI found violation of its code and instructed the advertisement making company to either modify it or completely withdraw it by April 20. The company has given in writing and will withdraw it.

George Cheriyan, director, CUTS said, “The IPL has a huge fan following in and outside India. Therefore it has a huge responsibility to promote the cause of road safety and such social issues, rather than coming up with promo films which are glorifying violation of traffic Rules.”

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