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Patanjali and Supreme Court Case: What went wrong and what are the developments?

Patanjali and Supreme Court Case

If you run through daily newspaper and news articles, you will see one news in common across platforms: Patanjali and Supreme Court Case. Let us see what did Patanjali do that Supreme Court is questioning them. The Supreme Court has been quite strict on Patanjali founders (Yoga guru Ramdev and his aide Balkrishna) in the hearing last week.

The apex court has even starting questioning the Uttarakhand government as they have not acted against Haridwar-based company. 

Patanjali and Supreme Court Case: What went wrong?

Supreme Court has been hearing contempt case against Patanjali regarding publication of advertisements. These ads make false and untrue claims regarding the products and their medical efficacy. 

The matter goes back to Covid years, when Patanjali released a drug named Coronil in 2021. Ramdev described it as “first evidence-based medicine for curing the COVID-19”. IMA spoke out against “blatant lie” that Coronil received WHO certification. 

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) filed petition in Supreme Court in August 2022. This came after Patanjali published advertisement with the name ‘Misconceptions Spread by Allopathy: Save Yourself And The Country From The Misconceptions Spread By Pharma And Medical Industry’.

On 27th February, court had directed Patanjali to cease all the electronic and print ads which are giving misleading information, with immediate effect. 

The petition filed by IMA specifically mentions instances where Ramdev termed allopathy as a “stupid and bankrupt science.” As per the petition, there had been claims regarding allopathic medicine being the reason behind Covid-19 deaths. 

IMA accused Patanjali from contributing to vaccine hesitancy when pandemic peaked. IMA mentioned that “continuous and unabated spread of misinformation” was together with Patanjali’s efforts to make unfounded and unproven claims. All such ads mentioned about curing certain diseases with the help of Patanjali products. 

Series of events in Patanjali and Supreme Court Case

On 21st November 21, 2023, during first hearing, Justice Amanullah warned (though orally) Patanjali against making claims”.

that their products can completely “cure” diseases. Justice also threatened the company to impose cost of INR 1 crore on every product for which this sort of claim is made. 

Senior Advocate Sajan Poovayya, who represented Patanjali, said there will not be any violation of law(s), regarding advertising or branding of products which are being manufactured and marketed by Patanjali. The advocate also stated that no casual statements highlighting medicinal efficacy or against any system of medicine shall be released. 

On 15th January 2024, the SC got anonymous letter which was addressed to Chief Justice of India and Justice Amanullah. The letter highlighted continued publishing of misleading advertisements. 

Later on, on February 27, bench including Justices Hima Kohli and Ahsannudin Amanullah gave contempt notice to Patanjali Ayurved and its MD for disobeying the earlier orders. The court then placed blanket ban till further orders are received on further advertising or branding of Patanjali’s medicinal products.

In next hearing, on March 19, Supreme Court was told that reply to contempt notice has not been filed. Post this, it gave an order which focused on seeking personal appearance of Balakrishna and Ramdev. Apex court also made Uttarakhand government a party. 

Next, on March 21, Balkrishna gave unqualified apology to the Supreme Court. On April 2, apex court criticised Ramdev and Balkrishna. The court termed their apology as “lip service”.

 On April 9, 2024, Ramdev and Balkrishna gave an unconditional apology to the Supreme Court. However, on April 10, SC highlighted that it is not convinced. The SC declined to accept the apology and considered it deliberate violation of undertaking.

Now, what next?

The court earlier declined 2 sets of apologies made by Ramdev and Balkrishna. Justice Hima Kohli stated that the letters were sent to media first. They believe in publicity. While there have been several developments in Patanjali and Supreme Court Case, SC pointed to their “attitude.” The court questioned why did they demean other systems of medicine to lay more emphasis on Ayurveda.

However, Ramdev replied that he would be careful from now onwards. SC has mentioned that it will consider this matter by keeping in perspective all the earlier developments. 

With the next hearing being scheduled on 23rd April, the court has not decided whether to forgive or not. Earlier orders are given due consideration. SC has asked Ramdev and Balkrishna to appear in court again. They are required to take steps to demonstrate their intent. 

Yoga guru Ramdev and his associate Balkrishna told SC on Tuesday that they were willing to give a public apology associated with Patanjali Ayurved’s false ads and Covid-19 cure claims. 

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I'm Ved Prakash, Founder & Editor @Newsblare Media, specialised in Business and Finance niches who writes content for reputed publication such as,, Motley Fool Singapore, etc. I'm the contributor of different... news sites that have widened my views on the current happenings in the world.

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