Ramdev, aide say sorry to SC, offer to issue public apology | India News

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Pushed to the wall by the Supreme Court for violating its order, Baba Ramdev and his disciple Balkrishna on Tuesday admitted to giving misleading advertisements about Patanjali products and sought to apologise to the court with folded hands.
At the outset of the hearing, a bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Ahsanuddin Amanullah said it wanted to talk to them in person and asked them to come to the front.Appreciating Ramdev for his contribution in the field of yoga, the court quizzed him on why he violated laws and its orders.
Ramdev replied that he did not have an understanding of law and it was done in ignorance and it was unbecoming of him to make such statements. He said the mistake would not be repeated. Talking in Hindi with the judges, he said Patanjali had conducted clinical trials of its products, which were very beneficial.

The bench, however, said there was a procedure to get his products recognised by a competent authority and it did not give him licence to criticise modern medicine. The court told him that his behaviour had been irresponsible. Noting that he had a legal team to assist him and the company, the bench said it could not accept his defence of ignorance of law.
“We cannot forget the history of the case. We passed three orders… You are not so innocent that you were not aware about the court orders,” the bench said.
Thereafter, the bench interacted with Balkrishna who also apologised with folded hands. Their lawyer, senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, told the bench that they would take steps to redeem themselves. He said they wanted to take steps voluntarily, including issuing a public apology in the media to show contrition. Noting his submission, the court granted them one week and posted the matter for April 23.
Ramdev and Balkrishna, who were present in court in the last three hearings, will have to appear before the court on the next date also.
The company and its promoters had to face the court’s ire as Ramdev held a press conference just a day after the SC passed an order on Nov 22 in which the company’s undertaking was recorded that it would eschew from misleading advertisements.
“Mr Poovayya, learned senior counsel for respondent No.5 (Patanjali), on instructions, assures this court that henceforth there shall not be any violation of any law(s), especially relating to advertising or branding of products manufactured and marketed by it and, further, that no causal statements claiming medicinal efficacy or against any system of medicine will be released to the media in any form. Respondent No.5 is bound down to such assurance,” the order had said.
Taking a strong view of violation of the undertaking, the court had initiated contempt proceedings against Ramdev and Balkrishna.

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