Shops in Tamil Nadu not to sell tobacco products today

Shops in Tamil Nadu not to sell tobacco products today

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CHENNAI: For the first time in the State, tobacco products will not be sold at any shop across the State for one full day – Friday – to mark the World No Tobacco Day. The announcement was made by T Vellaiyan, president of the Tamil Nadu Vanikargal Sangangalin Peravai while addressing a press meeting organized by the Adyar Cancer Institute. “We have sent communication to all our members. No shop in the State will sell tobacco products tomorrow,” said Vellaiyan.

“The move is aimed at creating awareness and helping with measures to contain the increasing usage of tobacco products,” said Dr V Shanta, chairperson of Adyar Cancer Institute.  A study conducted by the institute, Shanta said, had found that 14 percent shops selling tobacco products are located close to educational institutions. Chewable tobacco products are banned but are still available in the market.

“CSR activities by tobacco companies should not be allowed in schools as per law, but many institutions are ignorant of this.”Responding to this, Vellaiyan said traders had been instructed not to sell tobacco products near schools but the practice continues. “We have to reduce the sale step-by-step,” he said. Shanta also criticized the government for delaying the implementation of a vendor licensing policy for tobacco sale. “There are rules, but the government is not implementing them strictly,” she said.

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