Dharini Nagarajan
Richa Mishra

New Delhi, March 23

FMCG major, Colgate Palmolive (India) Ltd, has got a clean chit from the Monopolies & Restrictive Trade Practices Commission (MRTPC) on charges of unfair and restrictive trade practices filed by a consumer of Dabur India Ltd's `Lal Dant Manjan'.

The Commission, in a recent order, has come down hard on Dabur, stating that "the application has been motivated and filed at the behest of Dabur India Ltd" and that no particulars of any unfair trade practice were observed in the complaint.

The Dabur consumer, in the complaint, had alleged that he came across circulars distributed to dealers and retailers by Colgate Palmolive, which contained "false and misleading remarks and statements" disparaging the Dabur product.

Colgate Palmolive, on its part, filed a reply where it claimed that the complaint was frivolous and without any merit. It also said the Dabur consumer had suppressed the fact that Dabur's Lal Dant Manjan contained tobacco, the use of which had been prohibited in toothpastes and powders by an earlier Health Ministry notification.

In its order, the MRTPC agreed with Colgate's contention that the "application is mala fide and clearly appears to be filed at the behest of Dabur India Ltd". The Commission ruled out any unfair trade practice on part of Colgate Palmolive, saying, "We accordingly, find that the applicant has no right to file this complaint. He has also failed to establish that Colgate Palmolive (respondent) has been indulging in unfair trade practises."

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated March 24, 2006)
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