Demand apology, Rs 15 crore for damages
Srinagar: Kashmiri Pashmina artisans have served a legal notice to Idea Cellular asking the company to immediately withdraw its controversial advertisement on Pashmina, demanding Rs 10 crore compensation for “loss of business and reputation” and Rs 5 crore for “suffering pain and agony.”
It has asked the company to publish an apology to the shawl dealers of Jammu and Kashmir and the whole nation about the matter in print and electronic media within 15 days, failing which legal action would be initiated against it.
The notice served has in detail discussed the ways of testing Pashmina and authorized body to test it.
“The only authorized body to test and certify purity of Pashmina is the “Pashmina Testing And Quality Certification Center” which is a certified and authenticated laboratory set up by Craft Development Institute Bagh-i-Ali Mardan Khan, Srinagar, Kashmir,” the notice reads.
“Apart from the above tests there is no such test that is applied to determine the purity/ quality of Pashmina. It is apt to mention here that no certified authority or facility recommends or applies the “Ring Test” that is widely projected by the advertisement of your company,” it added.
According to contents of the notice, the entire visualization of advertisement not only made shawl vendors victim but also misled the entire nation and world. “Traditionally it was the now prohibited Shahtoos shawl that due to its softness and master weaving used to pass through a ring. Again this was neither any test for its authenticity nor genuineness but a feature that demonstrated its fine quality. What is more dangerous is that the synthetic and semi-synthetic low grade shawls manufactured in other parts of India and abroad can pass through a ring sometimes. Thus the entire visualization of your advertisement not only made shawl vendors victim but also misled the entire nation and world,” it adds.
Kashmir Pashmina, according to the notice “has a registered Geographical Indication having number 46 and Certificate number 97 in the classes of Goods 23; Yarns and Threads for Textile use , 24; Textile and Textile goods including bed and table covers and 25; Clothing, as on December 9, 2005.”
The notice has been served through Advocate Syed Sibtain Qadri and Associates.