Supreme Court issued Guidelines on Regulating Government Advertisements

May 13, 2015 14:30 IST

The Supreme Court (SC) on 13 May 2015 issued guidelines on regulating government advertisements. The guidelines were issued by a SC bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi.

The new guidelines by the apex court were framed with a view to discourage such advertisements from creating personality cults and it applies to the frequent advertisements that are placed by the centre and state governments to publicise schemes.

Details of the guidelines

  • Only photographs of the President, Prime Minister (PM) and Chief Justice of India (CJI) can feature in the newspaper advertisements released by state and central government departments.
  • The photographs of these dignitaries can only be used with their prior approval.
  • Besides, these three, the photos of late leaders like Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru can also be used in the government advertisements.
  • The use of photo of any politicians other than these personalities was banned by the apex court.
  • Other than politicians, the photos of even Chief Ministers and bureaucrats were also banned from being featured in newspaper advertisements.
  • In order to see that the framed guidelines are not violated, the apex court even asked the government to appoint a three-member committee to monitor it.

The guidelines were issued by a SC bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi in response to a petition filed by lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan-headed NGO Common Cause, who sought strict rules to ban government advertisements glorifying the politicians and ministers of government in power as it is the blatant misuse of taxpayers' money.

These guidelines were based on the recommendations of NR Madhava Menon headed three-member committee constituted by the SC to look into the matter in August 2014.

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