The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) did not grant permission to use the picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in print and electronic advertisements of the Reliance Jio, parliament was told on Thursday.
In a written reply in Rajya Sabha to a question by Samajwadi Party's Neeraj Shekhar, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore also admitted that it was aware that Reliance Jio used the Prime Minister's photographs in the advertisement.
"Yes sir, the government was aware," said Mr Rathore, adding that no permission was granted by PMO.
He added that the Directorate of Advertising and Visual Publicity (DAVP), a media unit of ministry, is the nodal agency for release of advertisement on the policies and programme of the government in various media vehicles, but "releases government advertisements only and does not release advertisements of any private body".
As Mr Shekhar sought to know about the actions taken against Jio, if permission was not taken in advance, Mr Rathore replies that the necessary act, the Emblems and Names (prevention of improper use) Act 1950, is administered by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.