Tobacco shops at IGI airport sans health warnings: NGO

June 11th, 2012 - 8:55 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 11 (IANS) An anti-tobacco advocacy group has drawn the attention of the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) to some shops at the airport selling tobacco products without displaying a warning sign prohibiting sale to minors.

In a letter to the DIAL chief, the NGO — Health Related Information Dissemination Among Youth (HRIDAY) — said tobacco shops at the airport premises did not display warnings indicating that the sale of tobacco products to minors was illegal.

“Through this letter, we wish to bring to your notice, violations of major sections of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) at the international terminal of Indira Gandhi International Airport. Majority of the tobacco shops inside the airport premises are blatantly violating a provision of COTPA,” the NGO said.

According to COTPA 2003, which prohibits sale of tobacco products to and by a person under 18 years, tobacco sellers are required to mandatory display a warning saying ’sale of tobacco to a person under the age of 18 is a punishable offence’.

“(Tobacco shops are) risking the health of millions of Indians and international passengers by advertising their products, not displaying the (warning) board prescribed, and selling tobacco products without specified pictorial health warnings,” stated the letter to Prabhakara Rao, DIAL’s chief executive officer.

The violations under various sections of COTPA also invite penalty, the letter mentioned. “We request DIAL to take immediate steps against such violations.”

Interestingly, the group has also written a letter to the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) on a similar violation where gutka or smokeless tobacco ads were found displayed at various metro stations in the capital.

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