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Need to Regulate the E-Cigarettes

The world is our oyster and technology is our oasis. Every nook and corner of our lives has been permeated by technology. E-cigarettes, the most common prototype of which is Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) is supposed to help people trying to quit smoking. Various sellers, including tobacco giants have projected e-cigarettes as ‘tobacco cessation’ products but there isn’t any concrete evidence supporting this claim. It is also a serious public health threat as there isn’t any regulatory approval for their usage. On the top of that, there are considerations of increasing import of e-cigarettes into the country.

E-cigarettes do not fall under the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003 because it contains nicotine and not tobacco. The COPTA mandates stringent health warnings on the advertisements and packaging of tobacco products. E-cigarettes as sold as therapeutic products on various e-commerce websites supposedly to enable people to quit smoking. Despite the fact that e-cigarettes contain nicotine, about 50 per cent of these websites have no health warnings on e-cigarettes. Dangers and threats posed by e-cigarettes include accidental consumption of the liquid inside the e-cigarette which may lead to death and possibilities of the product exploding.

 

For India, according to WHO Global Report, 2015, the number of smokers is on the decline. As such, unregulated sale of e-cigarettes is dangerous for our country. Besides causing nicotine addiction, these e-cigarettes can perpetuate smoking by making it more attractive. Indian government should take appropriate steps to curb the unregulated usage of e-cigarettes.

 

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