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MIB clarifies on condom ads ban, still lacks clarity

There is no clarity on definition of objectification. Who will certify the ads before airing it and what if MIB and brand disagree on the nature of content?

After Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), the Information and Broadcasting Ministry has clarified that the ban on condom advertisements on television between 6 am and 10 pm was only to commercials with sexually explicit content.

“It is clarified that the said advisory only pertains to sexually explicit content being used to market certain condom brands which titillate the audience from a PR perspective. Advertisements that do not sexually objectify women and are aimed at informing citizens regarding devices/products/medical interventions to ensure safe sex are not covered under the said advisory,” Indian Express reported quoting a memorandum issued by I&B Ministry.


Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday had issued notice to the central government on a petition challenging the advisory banning condom advertisements on television during day hours.

Now that the clarification has nothing new as compared to the one given by ASCI last week, it still lacks the clarity on several counts - What is the definition of objectification? Who will certify the ads before airing it? What if MIB and brand disagree on the nature of content?


Amidst all these developments, Masti Condoms has released its TV commercials this week with an aim to reach out to audience in small towns but the brand is able to advertise only between 10pm to 6am where people do not tend to watch much TV during late night. Now, even after the clarification by MIB, a few broadcasters told Best Media Info that they will not telecast condom ads in the day hours in the absence of clarity.

Best Media Info had highlighted that ASCI approaching government for condom ads ban was deplorable and the repeatedly defaulting brand deserved to be penalised instead of indirectly banning the entire category.


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