The Punjab Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal ordered to ban the manufacturing of “Gutka/Pan Masala”, processed/flavored/scented chewing tobacco and any other food products containing tobacco or nicotine in the state.
The state had already renewed the ban on the sale or distribution of “Gutka/Pan Masala”, processed/flavored/scented chewing tobacco and any other food products containing tobacco or nicotine in the state from 01 January, 2016. In view of greater public interest, the Punjab Chief Minister has ordered for the ban the manufacturing of such products.
In the month of November 2015, an article about Cool Lip tobacco product was published. The article mentioned how Children Against Tobacco (CAT) had reported about the sale of “Cool Lip” products near the schools in Chennai.
In relation to this,Tamil Nadu People’s Forum for Tobacco Control (TNPFTC) identified that the product is being manufactured in Punjab and sent a formal letter to Government of Punjab and the Food Safety Department. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has considered the issue and asked the state Food Safety Department to take action on the issue.
With the advocacy of the National Tobacco Control Community, the Government of Punjab has taken this advanced measure in order to abolish the presence of tobacco. The Government of Punjab has been proactive and taken the pro-public step. Due to this step, products such as Cool Lip will not be manufactured henceforth in Punjab.
However, back in Tamil Nadu, the Government has not taken any action against the sale and distribution of banned tobacco products. It makes one wonder whether the Government has interest in the health of the public and especially interest towards the health of the children. It is imperative now that the Tamil Nadu Government takes stringent action against the sale and distribution of banned tobacco products.
TNPFTC has appreciated the contribution of Media in strengthening the tobacco control initiatives.