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  • Assam Govt. bans gutka, pan masala containing tobacco-nicotine for one year

    Published on November 27, 2019

    By Bhupen Goswami

    Guwahati : The Government of Assam, in a bold move, has imposed a complete ban on the sale of gutkhas and pan masalas, containing nicotine and tobacco, in the state.The ban has been imposed for a year under Clause (A) of Sub-Section 2 of Section 30 of the Food Safety & Security Act, 2006.In a move to make Assam a tobacco free state, the state government on Wednesday imposed a complete ban on the sale, manufacture, storage, distribution, transportation and display of gutka, pan masala and chewing materials containing tobacco and nicotine. The Assam government has banned the gutka, pan masala and chewing materials containing tobacco and nicotine for a period of one year in the state under Clause (A) of Sub-Section 2 of Section 30 of the Food Safety & Security Act, 2006. As per the official notification issued by the Commissioner of Food Safety of Assam government, Dr Chandrima Baruah, the prohibition has been made under the regulations of 2, 3 and 4 of the Food Safety & Standards (Prohibitions and Restrictions on Sales) Regulations 2011 of the Food Safety & Standards Act.

    The state government has taken the decision following the danger that many people have lost their lives consuming tobacco. Earlier in 2013, the Assam government had banned manufacture and distribution of gutka and pan masala containing tobacco and nicotine for a period of one year.This is sure to cause immense grief to the ‘chewers’ of these substances, who cannot go for long without gnawing on these toxic substances. However, at the same time, this move of the Government is likely to be hailed by anti-gutkha activists. Thus, while we can expect the cries and complaints of the gutkha chewers to ring out across the same, at the same time, we can expect parents, whose wards have taken to chewing these substances, to finally breathe a sigh of relief. Pan masala is widely used across all the strata of society and is freely available in many parts of the country. According to indianjcancer.com, it is carcinogenic, genotoxic, and has harmful effects on the oral cavity, liver, kidneys and reproductive organs.

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