Assam Consumers’ Forum Demands Ban on Gutka, Pan Masala | Assam News

Sunday, 29 November 2020

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Assam: With 41.7% People Consuming Smokeless Tobacco, Consumers’ Forum Demands Ban on Gutka, Pan Masala

G Plus News | November 21, 2020 13:10 hrs

GUWAHATI: The Consumers’ Legal Protection Forum of Assam has demanded the extension of the prohibition order for manufacture, storage, transportation, distribution and sale of Gutka, Pan Masala or any chewing materials etc. that contains tobacco and/or nicotine.  


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The Forum has submitted a memorandum in this regard to Monalisa Goswami, Commissioner  & Secretary, Health and Family Welfare Department.


Extension has been sought for another year of the previous prohibition order which will expire on 22nd November, in light of the current pandemic situation.


WHO, ICMR, and the government of India had earlier warned against the consumption of tobacco, as such consumers might be more vulnerable to the COVID-19 virus.


Notably, out of 39,000 new cancer cases that are reported in the North-East region every year, Assam alone contributes 29,000 cases. And this is attributed to the high rate of tobacco consumption in the state.


Assam has an average tobacco consumption of 48.2%  which is almost double of the national average of 28.6 percent. 41.7% people use smokeless tobacco in some form vis a vis 13.3% users of smoked tobacco.


Nearly 8-9 lakh people die in India due to tobacco use every year. Each year over 80 lakh people die worldwide because of tobacco usage in one form or the other. More than 70 lakh of these deaths are due to direct tobacco usage.

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