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Prof Bejon Misra on the Unfortunate and Iniquitous Indian Dichotomy in Tobacco Legislation

“Merely increasing taxes on certain tobacco products is not a wholesome solution. If the laws cause discomfort to the addicted consumers, it will only push them into a more rebellious and devil-may-care stance. Why not consider educating people about the rampant harmful effects of tobacco consumption and encourage them on the path from addiction to deaddiction by once again starting the 24×7 Toll Free Tobacco Control Helpline and promoting deaddiction centres, apart from a comprehensive policy to address the root cause of ineffective tobacco law and its enforcement. 

Come to think of it – Can we consider bringing in a complete ban on tobacco products – aka prohibition – where tobacco is sold only under licenses where necessary?

Tobacco is a silent killer – it causes a lifetime of misery and suffering for both the addicts and their families. But will such discriminatory and knee jerk reactions resolve the issues? The government should consider better mechanisms for safeguarding public health that do not cause unnecessary discomfort to the helpless, voiceless, legitimate and addicted consumers.”

Attachment: Article Dichotomy of Tobacco Amendment Bill (PDF)