Is Vaping In India Going Up In Smoke?
The Bihar state government has issued a total ban on nicotine-containing e-cigarettes.
E-cigarettes, or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), are harm reduction devices designed to provide nicotine without the burning of tobacco. The manufacture, distribution, sale, purchase, display and advertisement of these products is now completely banned in Bihar.
Even purchases made online have been banned in the state, so residents won’t even be able to bring vaping gear in from elsewhere.
The State Drug Controller, Ravindra Kumar Sinha, issued an official notification recently, sending the brief to all Assistant Drug Controllers and Drug Inspectors for its strict enforcement in each of their respective areas.
The state had previously banned the manufacture, distribution, trade, sale, purchase, display and advertisement of all tobacco products and items containing nicotine that had not been approved by the Drug Controller General of India. E-cigarettes have been banned in pursuance of the earlier decision of the State Tobacco Control Coordination Committee headed by the health department principal secretary, the notification said.
In addition to their ban, the Center has also added e-cigarettes to the category of ‘sinful goods’, which would attract higher goods and services tax should any gain approval to sell from the Drug Controller General of India.
As this marks the sixth state in India to ban e-cigarettes, many are waiting to see what stance the Union Government will take on Tobacco Harm Reduction. It’s not looking very hopeful according to The Times of India:
“The Union government is likely to ban e-cigarettes following an expert committee’s conclusion that they have cancer-causing properties, are highly addictive, and do not offer a safer alternative to tobacco based smoking products.”
“The health ministry is considering a ban on electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), of which e-cigarette is a prototype, after the technical committee evaluated recent research that said e-cigarettes were potentially lethal.”
Read their full article here.
If these bans continue, more and more vapers and smokers will be put at risk.