Delhi HC Orders Removal Of Social Media Post Claiming Centipede Found In Amul Ice Cream

Amul Ice Cream

The Delhi High Court has ordered a Noida resident to remove her social media posts alleging she found a centipede in a tub of Amul ice cream.

Justice Manmeet P S Arora, presiding over a lawsuit by Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation, which markets products under the Amul brand, also prohibited the customer from posting similar content on social media until further notice.

On June 15, Deepa Devi posted a picture on social media platform ‘X’ (formerly Twitter), claiming a centipede was inside her Amul ice cream tub, which she had ordered through an instant delivery app.

The plaintiff company argued that this claim was false, stating it was “absolutely impossible for any foreign substance, let alone an insect, to be present in an ice cream tub packed at its facility.”

In a July 4 order, the court noted the non-cooperation of the customers, who have also been absent from the proceedings, giving credibility to the company’s case.

The court observed that the customers were given a chance to participate and substantiate their claim but chose not to appear and refused to provide the ice cream tub for investigation.

Court’s Observation

“The non-appearance of defendant nos. 1 and 2 (Deepa Devi and her husband) evidences their unwillingness to participate in the forensic examination and verification of their claims of the dead insect made in the social media posts uploaded on 15.06.2024,” the court stated in an ad interim ex-parte order.

The court ordered, “Defendant nos. 1 and 2 are directed to forthwith remove the social media posts uploaded by them on defendant no. 1’s Twitter/X account titled @Deepadi11… within 3 days.” They are also restrained from “posting and uploading any content identical or similar to the said post” on ‘X’ or any other social media platform, including Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, until further orders.

Additionally, the court barred them from “publishing or causing to publish any content regarding the plaintiff or plaintiff’s product with respect to the incidents referred to in the plaint, anywhere on the internet or in print or electronic media until further orders.”

The court clarified that if the defendants fail to remove the social media posts within three days, the company can request ‘X’ to delete them from the platform.

Represented by senior advocate Sunil Dalal and lawyer Abhishek Singh, the plaintiff company submitted that while it was willing to investigate the matter and had contacted the customers on June 15, they refused to provide the ice cream tub to the officials.

The company emphasized that stringent quality checks are employed at every stage, from procuring raw milk to manufacturing the ice cream at their ISO-certified plants and loading the finished product into temperature-controlled refrigerated vans.

They assured the court that these quality checks ensure no physical, bacterial, or chemical contamination, and each product conforms to the standards set by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India.

The plaintiff argued that a forensic examination by any government laboratory could effectively determine whether the insect was present in the ice cream tub before it was sealed and packed.

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About the Author: Meera Verma