Legislation on electronic cigarettes 'all bark no bite', diluted under the influence of industry

Delhi, December 2 () A former member of a committee of experts formed by the Center to suggest ways to restrict the use of nicotine and nicotine delivery devices has qualified the bill that prohibits electronic cigarettes as legislation diluted under The influence of the industry did not address the serious problem of nicotine products.

It's just a no-barking legislation, said public health activist Hemant Goswami.

He received the 2013 WHO award for fighting tobacco, said the bill partially addresses the use of electronic cigarettes, which is less than 1 percent of the real problem of nicotine abuse.

The Electronic Cigarettes Prohibition Act, 2019, will become law with Rajya Sabha approving it on Monday, days after its approval in Lok Sabha.

Goswami, who has been pushing for a ban on all forms of nicotine, said the bill has been diluted under the influence of the industry.

In 2007, Goswami had filed a public interest order petition in the High Court of Punjab and Haryana to ban chemical nicotine, saying it was a deadly poison and that its various forms such as sheesha or hookah and electronic cigarettes were a serious danger to Public health

In 2012, the higher court issued a ruling admitting that nicotine and all nicotine delivery devices were poisons and that the state should regulate their use.

Following the court order, the Ministry of Health of the Union formed a committee in 2013 that had Goswami and WHO officials as expert members in restricting the use of nicotine and nicotine delivery devices.

The committee had recommended a total ban on nicotine in all its forms.

After deliberations for five years, in 2017, the legal group of the committee recommended that it is necessary and convenient in the public interest to completely prohibit, without exception, the import, manufacture, distribution and sale of nicotine as an extract and/or chemical and electronic devices Nicotine supply. Goswami said the new legislation presented by the ministry of health has completely eliminated the recommendation to ban the use of nicotine as an extract and/or chemical. PLB PLB ABH ABH