New Delhi, December 3: The Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Office PMO did not grant permission for using the picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in print and electronic advertisements of Reliance Jio, disclosed by Information and Broadcasting Minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore on Thursday. In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha to a question by Samajwadi Party’s Neeraj Shekhar, Rathore said that government was aware that Reliance Jio used the Prime Minister’s photographs in the advertisement. He also added saying that no permission was granted by the PMO.
Rathore said that any misuse of the Prime Minister’s photo is covered under the Emblems and Names Act 1950, which is administered by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.
Reliance Jio may end up paying a penalty of just up to Rs 500 for using Prime Minister Narendra Modi's photograph in print and electronic advertisements without permission. The law governing prevention of improper use of emblems and names of 1950 provides for this rather insignificant penalty for violating norms.
A similar question was raised in another instance recently when Modi's picture was used after he announced the demonetization policy, in an advertisement for PayTm.
The Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution that administers the Act preventing the improper use of emblems and names said it will "take the necessary steps."
Other than the Prime Minister, the list of names and emblems that cannot be used without prior permission includes President of India, governor of a state, and government of India among others.