Justice KR Shriram in the Bombay High Court on Monday passed an ex-parte order against Patanjali Ayurved owned by Baba Ramdev .
Hindustan Unilever(HUL) has obtained an ad-interim injunction against Patanjali Ayurved’s toilet soap advertisement, which allegedly disparaged HUL’s soap brands. The high court has directed Patanjali Ayurved to stop airing the said advertisement till the next date of hearing.
The said advertisement plays on names of leading brands, indirectly telling consumers to reject “chemical-based soaps” and adopt natural ones. Patanjali has been airing the said advertisement since Saturday (September 2). On Monday, HUL approached the Bombay HC, seeking an injunction against the said advertisement.
HUL controls around half of the Rs 15,000-crore toilet soaps market. Patanjali, which has been disrupting FMCG categories by pushing its products on the “natural” or ayurved plank, has gone aggressive on the advertisement front as well. It has launched a frontal attack on almost all leading FMCG brands in toothpastes, hair oils, edible oils and soaps with its slew of advertisements, which indirectly compares its products with rivals.
Thus, the court allowed the following prayer- “(a) That pending the hearing and final disposal of the suit, Defendant, its parent company, group companies, subsidiaries, directors, servants, officers, employees, representatives, agents, advertising agencies and all other persons claiming under them or acting in concert with them or on their behalf or acting on their instructions be restrained by an order and injunction of this Hon’ble Court from telecasting or broadcasting or otherwise howsoever communicating to the public or publishing the Impugned TVC (i.e. Exhibit R) or any part thereof or any other advertisement of a similar nature in any language or in any manner causing the Impugned TVC (i.e. Exhibit R) or any part thereof or any other advertisement of a similar nature in any language or in any manner causing the Impugned TVC (i.e. Exhibit R) or any part thereof or any other advertisement of a similar nature to be telecast or broadcast or communicated to the public or published in any manner.”
The court will hear the matter on September 18.