LG V K Saxena extends ban on manufacture, sale of tobacco products in Delhi

- August 11, 2023
| By : Patriot Bureau |

The Lt Governor said tobacco products are now affecting children and youngsters and this menace should be contained for the future generation

PILE OF LEAVES: Wholesale traders of betel leaves say the demand has gone down due to rise of gutka sales.

Delhi’s Lieutenant Governor, V K Saxena, has announced an extension of the prohibition on the manufacturing and sale of tobacco products, including gutkha and paan masala, within the city for an additional year, according to officials from Raj Niwas.

The decision, aimed at safeguarding the health of children and young adults, underscores the necessity of curbing this menace to ensure a healthier future generation.

The Lieutenant Governor emphasised the importance of strict enforcement of the notification, warning against any lax approach towards its implementation within the city.

The Food Safety Department of the Delhi government will soon release a notification to extend the ban, following approval by the Lieutenant Governor.

The move will encompass the complete ban on the production, storage, distribution, and sale of various forms of tobacco products, including those that are flavored, scented, or mixed with addictive substances. These products are commonly referred to as Gutka, Paan Masala, flavored/scented tobacco, and Kharra.

The ban covers both packaged and unpackaged tobacco products, and its enforcement will remain in effect for an additional year, as per the official statement.

The decision is in alignment with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India’s regulations outlined in the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restrictions on Sales) Regulations of 2011, which restrict the sale and usage of tobacco and nicotine in food products.

The orders issued by the Lieutenant Governor are founded on the powers conferred upon him by Article 239AA (4) of the Constitution of India. This move underscores his commitment to public health, particularly given the escalating instances of oral cancer cases within the capital city.

In April of this year, the Delhi High Court upheld the ban previously imposed by the food safety commissioner on the production, storage, and sale of gutkha, paan masala, flavored tobacco, and related products across the national capital.

This verdict overturned a September 2022 decision by a single judge of the court that had revoked the ban. The court’s ruling dismissed the objections raised by tobacco industry entities against the prohibition notifications issued between 2015 and 2021.

The Delhi government initially introduced a ban on the sale, purchase, and storage of all forms of chewable tobacco, including “guktha, khaini, and zarda,” within the national capital in the year 2015. (With inputs from PTI)