New Delhi, Nov 26 (GCCurrentAffairs) Health and Family Welfare Minister Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday said it was the need of the hour was to take preventive and proactive action in the case of Electronic Cigarettes and thus the Ordinance was promulgated to ban them.
‘We cannot be insensitive to the health of the people, especially children. Why should we wait even for two months to issue the ban,’ Dr Vardhan said while replying to the debate on The Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes (Production, Manufacture, Import, Export, Transport, Sale, Distribution, Storage and Advertisement) Bill, 2019.
The Lok Sabha passed the Bill, which seeks to prohibit the production, trade, storage, and advertisement of electronic cigarettes, with voice vote.
The debate on the bill concluded on Tuesday evening.
‘You all rush to oppose Ordinance even on an issue like this,’ he pointed out to Opposition members, and added that the motive of the government should not be questioned in the matter.
Nothing can be more important than the health of the people of the country, he said, adding that ‘Less harmful does not mean harmless’. He stressed that regulation is not enough and complete ban was required of e-cigarettes.
Dr Vardhan maintained that,’ A total 96.6 per cent population of the country are still non-smokers. The e-Cigarettes industry is trying to target children and the government seeks to protect the children with this ban.
The Minister averred that countries where e-cigarettes were used, have shown exponential increase in usage.
Dr Vardhan said only 0.2 per cent population uses these e-Cigarettes and is propagated as fashionable and glamorous. ‘These products have attractive features and aggressive marketing is done and there is a false notion of safety in their usage,’ he stressed.