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A seasoned lawmaker has said India needs to seriously take a relook at its tobacco laws, and those relating to e-cigarettes and heated tobacco because the health ministry’s ban on e-cigarettes is a missed public health opportunity. MV Rajeev Gowda, vice-chairperson, State Institute for Transformation of Karnataka and former Rajya Sabha member strongly feels e-cigarettes could have been an option to help smokers wean themselves off tobacco in India, the world’s second largest consumer of tobacco.
Hundreds of enforcement drives, putting up ‘No Smoking’ signs, and communication about the effects of smoking as well as second-hand smoke resulted in a 27 per cent reduction in smoking in public places in Bengaluru. Earlier this year, the city received international recognition for its efforts, said a case study in the recently released report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the implementation of tobacco control measures.
Tobacco consumption - in the form of smoking or chewing - has been linked with multiple serious health issues. But cultivation of tobacco also happens to be the source of livelihood for thousands of farmers, particularly in Mysuru and parts of adjoining Hassan district.
Over the last seven years, the area under tobacco cultivation in Mysuru is believed to have come down from 80,000 hectares to around 65,000 hectares with farmers making a switch to other alternative crops
The Centre has asked states to report on its portal information on the availability of e-cigarettes on online shopping sites and retail shops despite a ban on it since 2019. The Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes (Production, Manufacture, Import, Export, Transport, Sale, Distribution, Storage and Advertisement) Act (PECA) came into force in 2019. There seems to be a lack of awareness about the portal which was launched in May, an official source said, [...]
A newly published book, “E-Cigarettes and the Comparative Politics of Harm Reduction: History, Evidence and Policy”, has offered some serious arguments about benefits of vaping and the troubles of tobacco.
The book has made policymakers of health in India sit up and take notice, ostensibly because public health campaigners in India and some parts of the world have routinely used fear campaigns to highlight risks of e-cigarettes. They have rarely attacked tobacco manufacturers. Such is the power of the campaign that in Australia, opposition to e-cigarettes has become something of a moral crusade against youth vaping and smoking.
Almost 61 per cent of people aged between 15-30 in India who have never used electronic cigarettes (e-cigarette) before are susceptible to taking up vaping in the future, according to a new study.
The study, based on an international survey of 4,007 people, including 456 from across India, identified exposure to e-cigarette advertising as having the second greatest effect on susceptibility, after current or past tobacco use, while perceived harmfulness reduced the likelihood of susceptibility.
The use of e-cigarettes is equally harmful as these cause numerous diseases, affecting mostly the lungs. This was stated by health experts [...] They said the manufacturing, sale and consumption of the product was banned in the country.
Dr Jivanjot Kaur, Nodal Officer of National Tobacco Control Program-cum-District Dental Health Officer, said some people were under the impression that e-cigarettes were comparatively safe as compared to other cigarettes, which was not true.
“These e-cigarettes produce nicotine, which is highly addictive and other harmful chemicals which are bad for health,” she said, [...]
There are estimated to be over 1.1 billion smokers today, of which more than 100 million are in India – more than any country in the world outside China. Smoking cessation policies and programs generally present smokers with two unpleasant options; quit or die. A third approach to tobacco harm reduction involves using alternative sources of nicotine, including modern smokeless tobacco products. [...] Dr. Peter Harper, a renowned Physician and Medical Oncologist, recognized for his work in developing new anti-cancer and vaccine therapies, highlights the need for evidence-based harm reduction strategies to help achieve India’s tobacco control goals.
E-cigarettes are easily available at tobacco shops and sold to anyone without any age verification, the findings of a joint survey have revealed.
The findings have been shared with the Union health ministry.
The survey conducted across six states, Assam, Goa, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Telangana, as well as Delhi also found that e-cigarettes get delivered within a couple of days when ordered online [...] and are sold without any age verification. Also, most of the vendors are not aware that e-cigarettes have been banned by law and are openly selling those, and the e-cigarettes that are being sold are mostly manufactured in China, [...]
CPPR chairman Dr. D Dhanuraj said the regulations of e-cigarettes can be framed in a manner that balances the potential use of e-cigarettes as new technology
Kerala-based Centre for Public Policy Research (CPPR), an independent public policy organisation, on Tuesday, urged the Union government to provide an alternative to cigarette smokers to switch to some less harmful products. The CPPR, which released a White Paper on regulatory regimes for novel tobacco and nicotine products, called upon the government to take on a "multi-dimensional and scientific evidence-backed stance" in adopting harm reduction alternatives for the betterment of its citizens.