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DB admits PIL against e-cigarette ban, directs govt to file reply
jkupdate.com | 26-Oct-2018 05:21 PM
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  • The Jammu and Kashmir High Court today began hearing on a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a vaper against e-cigarette ban in the state and asked the J&K government to file its reply and fixed December 6, 2018 next date of hearing.




JAMMU: The Jammu and Kashmir High Court today began hearing  on a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a vaper against e-cigarette ban in the state and asked the J&K government to file its reply and fixed December 6, 2018 next date of hearing.

Appearing on behalf of the petitioner, Dr Farrukh Khan argued before the court that the circular issued by the state government banning e-cigarettes was perverse. Advocate general DC Raina appeared on behalf of the J&K government.

After hearing the two sides, the bench of Chief justice Gita Mittal and Justice Alok Aradhe issued notice to the state government and directed them to file reply.

The state imposed ban on e-cigarettes in July last year. The PIL has been filed by Mushtaq Ahmad Shah, a J&K resident.

It is worthwhile to mention here that  E-cigarettes are an electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS). J&K has the sixth highest tobacco usage rate among all Indian states, as per the latest Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS). As per the latest National Family Health Survey (NFHS-4), 38.2% men in J&K are addicted to some kind of tobacco usage. The only states which have a higher smoking rate than J&K are five north-eastern states of Mizoram, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura and Manipur. Association of Vapers India (AVI), an organisation representing smokers and vapers in India, expressed satisfaction over today's developments. 

AVI director Samrat Chowdhery said it is regrettable that the J&K has resorted to e-cigarette ban at a time when tobacco usage in the state is alarmingly high. He suggested that the state should withdraw the ban in the interest of public health. E-cigarettes do release nicotine, which is addictive but does not harm human health.  Moreover, e-cigarettes offer a safer alternative to smokers to quit. Chowdhery reminded that health regulators in developed countries like the US, the UK and other European countries have permitted usage of e-cigarette given its potential in fighting the menace of tobacco.

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