Srinivasan Swamy, chairman and managing director, RK Swamy BBDO, was elected chairman of The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) at the advertising industry self-regulatory body's AGM on 9 September 2016.
Swamy was vice chairman of the council prior and replaces HT Media's Benoy Roychowdhury.
Abanti Sankaranarayanan, vice chairperson, CIABC, was elected vice-chairman.
Shashidhar Sinha, CEO, IPG Mediabrands was re-appointed honorary treasurer.
Other members of the board of governors for 2016-'17 are:
Al Rajwani (Procter & Gamble Hygiene and Healthcare)
Benoy Roychowdhury (HT Media)
Dev Bajpai (Hindustan Unilever)
D Shivakumar (PepsiCo India Holdings)
Gurmit Singh (Yahoo India)
NS Rajan (Ketchum Sampark)
Narendra Ambwani (Agro Tech Foods)
Prashant Singh (Neilsen India Region)
Raj Jain (Bennett Coleman & Co.)
Rohit Gupta (Sony Pictures Networks India)
SK Palekar (Institute of Management Technology)
Subhash Kamath (BBH India)
Sunil Lulla (Grey Worldwide India)
Benoy Roychowdhury, the outgoing chairman of ASCI said, “It has been quite an exhilarating year for ASCI. ASCI completed 30 glorious years on 21 October 2015. We entered into the second year of collaboration with the Department of Consumer Affairs (DoCA) and processed more than 1000 complaints against misleading advertisements received through Department of Consumer Affairs portal GAMA - gama.gov.in (Grievances Against Misleading Advertisements). Encouraged by the success of the mobile app, we launched a WhatsApp number +91 77100 12345 for consumers to send in complaints conveniently. ASCI continues to grow from strength to strength and as a chairman for 2015-'16 I am very happy to have been an enabler for this journey.”
Swamy said, “It is indeed an honour to be elected as chairman of ASCI which has progressively contributed to effective self-regulation in advertising content. We are confident that the marketing and advertising sectors, industry bodies, regulators, consumer activists and the general public will actively seek ASCI’s services and make self-regulation more relevant in the increasing competitive environment. ASCI will continue to engage with stakeholders such as Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Ministry of Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH), Ministry of Road, Transport and Highways (MORTH) to propagate self-regulation, in addition to of course DoCA. It is heartening to note that the parliamentary standing committee has recognised the role played by ASCI and have recommended that ASCI should be given some legal teeth. I am therefore quite excited to take over the mantle ASCI chairmanship at this time when so many important things are on the anvil to strengthen further the principles of self-regulation. I do hope to make 2016-'17, yet another landmark year.”
During the year 2015-'16, the Consumer Complaints Council (CCC) constituted by ASCI as an independent body met 49 times and deliberated on complaints against 1,389 advertisements. Of these, complaints against 891 advertisements were upheld, while 497 were not upheld and complaint against one advertisement was considered to be a 'non-issue'.