New Delhi[India], Aug.30 : Following Parliamentary Committee recommendations to impose accountability on celebrities for endorsing products and misleading advertisements, the Congress Party on Monday said the manufacturer must also be covered under the ambit of Consumer Protection Bill 2015.
Congress leader Tom Vadakkan said that brand ambassadors working for the government must also be brought under the scanner.
"I think the offender is not just the brand ambassador but the manufacturer too. The brand ambassador is aware that the product is a bad quality, punishing the brand ambassador for that is understandable, but misleading the brand ambassador to believe that the product is good in good faith is also some kind of a fraud and that also needs to be looked into.
Brand ambassadors working for the government must also be under the scanner for advertising, briefing the community on issues which they do themselves don't practice," he told ANI.
An inter-ministerial meet, headed by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, will today discuss the draft bill prepared by the consumer affairs ministry.
The panel includes Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan, Heath Minister J.P. Nadda, Transport Minister Nitin Gakari, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Power Minister Piyush Goyal and Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
In August 2015, the government had introduced the Consumer Protection Bill 2015 in the Parliament. In April this year, the Parliamentary Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution, chaired by Telugu Desam Party leader J.C.
Divakar Reddy, unanimously adopted the report. The new Bill seeks to make any 'false or misleading' endorsement which is 'prejudicial to the interest of any consumer' a penal offence, punishable with a jail term of up to two years and a fine of Rs.
10 lakh for the first such offence, and imprisonment of five years along with a fine of Rs. 50 lakh for the second and subsequent offences..