Banning the Pictures Of Politicians On Advertisements: Justified Or Not?

Banning the Pictures Of Politicians On Advertisements: Justified Or Not?

The Supreme Court put an end to taxpayer-funded, large scale narcissism of politicians by prohibiting the government from releasing media ads highlighting photos of chief ministers, political leaders and ministers of political parties. A bench of Justices P C Ghose and Ranjan Gogoi said exceptions are the pictures of the Prime Minister, the President and Chief Justice of India. The court stated that publishing photos and relating them with government policy can result personality cult in the nation. Do you support Supreme Court decision?


- Supreme Court decision is justified as the picture of politician on almost every advertisement is nothing but a form of self-promotion.

- At cost of taxpayers’ money politicians want their photos to be there on government advertisements, even if they are not involved in the projects.

- If the prime focus of government ad is the face of the party leader, why should exchequer fund it? The politicians do it using their own funds.

- The basic principle of advertisement is to be functional, and in government advertisements there is no need to be it supported it by politician’s pictures.

- Celebrating birthday of a working CM or publishing the picture of sitting CM on religious function is a colossal waste of funds.


- Political parties should not be considered different from an organization, and if an organization needs proper marketing and communication tools, then why should political parties be considered as an exception?

- If the picture of politicians on advertisement is a form of self-promotion, then it is very much needed in a country like India. A large part of Indian population is illiterate and can connect with politics from pictorial ads.

- The recent verdict of Supreme Court indicates that Prime Minister, President and CJI possesses right to self-promotion.

- There is a ruling party and there are opposition parties, representing an industry of politics where everything including competition exists. In such a industry, there is a need of pictorial advertisements.

- The recent verdict certainly favors the ruling party and can be termed as a discrimination factor. It will bring additional focus on BJP and everything good will be credited to the respective party.


The verdict of Supreme Court states that the permissible and legitimate object of an advertisement can be achieved without supported by photograph of particular functionary. It is absolutely true. If the work is performed as per the defined standards, there is no need for publicity. Moreover, the good work don’t needs any form of advertisement while bad work cannot be kept hidden under any cover.
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  • Banning photos of politicians in ads is judicial over-reach -Farhana Afreen (05/19/15)
  • Banning photos of politicians in ads is judicial over-reach


    Supreme Court is doing all it can to exercise control over government executives. Controversial statements by politicians and highly offending statements meant to arouse communal feelings does not drive SC to call for a strict ruling but advertisements placed for any reason be it personal gain or vote banking made SC wake up from its deep slumber to call for a ban. Alas, not everybody is impressed! A fresh row has begun over this judgement that says from now on no official advertisement can have photos of any government executive except Prime Minister, President, and Chief Justice of India. Some are calling this a justified act while more are concerned that the apex court has over-reached in its judgement.


    1. Crores are spent during elections in advertisements by politicians to build up "personality cult" and no doubt the money spent on these ads come from taxes paid by people of our county. Taxes are meant to help government in raising living standard of people and not for personal promotions of politicians for drawing votes. The government should not be funding these promotions of politicians in any way and a ban is the right way to ensure that no more money is wasted over them.

    2. These photos are unnecessary association of politicians with government projects and are used in such a way that diverts attention from government policies. Publication of ads to promote personality cult should never have been encouraged and the decision to put a ban on it is very much justified.

    3. Most of these ads during elections are intended to blame the opposition in a very diplomatic way and hinting at how their party would do better work. We all know the parties hate the opposition and we do not want our tax money to be spent on making of ads that would tell the same tale of blame game.

    4. These advertisement are a waste of money which is in no way appreciated by the educated class of people. We have enough news channels and newspaper headlines to tell us who is who of politics. An entire page occupied with a large picture of a minister in folded hands does not make us believe that he is dedicated towards servings people of his region.

    5. We do not wants big posters and words. We want action from these people feeding upon the hard earned money of our people. Politicians should concentrate on ways to improve living standards of the poor section instead of posing in front of cameras to tell tales of how many roads they were able to make with the fund extracted from people they are trying to mislead with exaggerated messages.

    Judicial over-reach:

    1. Supreme court is supposed to frame guidelines to ensure no misuse at public expenses but it has instead gone ahead to put a restrain on the functioning of the executives. This is direct curbing to the freedom of the executives in regions where SC is not expected to intervene.

    2. Laying down exceptions for PM to have his pictures published at government funded advertisements while restraining the same for chief ministers and governors of states is a case of serious biasness and the state executives have every right to show displeasure over the judgement.

    3. The chief ministers, MPs and MLAs are also elected by democracy voting and banning them from an act which is justified for PM, President and CJI is a direct insult to legislature and parliament. Just as Shiv Sena points out, Supreme Court is becoming dictatorial in nature and its judgements are expected to receive "bow and nod" from those under question.

    4. Numerous cases pending that need immediate attention is delayed for ages. By the time the convict has already reached the age when he is half in grave, then the files are opened for judgement. When the court can pass major judgements in the bat of an eye, is there a single reason why numerous other cases should stay pending forever? What kind of a democracy are we living in where rape cases stay pending forever and more rules are instantly passed to curb not some major issues?

    5. Even if public fund is wasted on creation of personality cult, it is not upto the apex court to make instant judgements based on vague facts. To analyze the wastage of public funds, the procedure should have initiated by taking into account statutory auditors like the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). Do we not know the amount of money and resources wasted in pending litigations? Are these not wastage of public money and time?


    The apex court is definitely crossing its area of functioning while absolutely ignoring and delaying the activities within its own framework. The court has now started acting as the law maker as well as the one to implement it. How public money should be spent is a matter of parliament and not SC. The irony is that the courts are against NJAC involving executives in the selection procedures but it is by all means treading into the government's zone of decision making.