The Indian Health Ministry seems set to codify a ban on gutkha, pan masala and other chewable forms of tobacco, according to a story in the latest issue of the BBM Bommidala Group newsletter.
For some time, the situation regarding these products has been confusing with the sale of chewable forms of tobacco seemingly illegal but not specifically banned.
Now, the ministry seems to be set on acting on the basis of a Supreme Court of India observation that these products are classified as food items, to which the addition of tobacco is illegal.
What the outcome will be is difficult to say, but the banning of products widely used and generally thought to be addictive will be an interesting social experiment.
It has to be assumed that illicit sales will increase and that some consumers of these products will turn to smoking.
Neither of these would seem to constitute a positive health outcome.
Category: Breaking News