Tamil Nadu Implements One-Year Ban on Gutka and Pan Masala Sales to Prioritize Public Health

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In a significant move to prioritize public health, the state of Tamil Nadu has enforced a one-year prohibition on the manufacture, storage, transport, distribution, and sale of gutka and pan masala products, starting from Tuesday. This decision comes nearly a month after the Supreme Court stayed a Madras High Court ruling that had nullified a 2018 notification imposing a ban on these items in the state.

A recently published gazette notification, signed by the commissioner of food safety, R Lalvena, stated that the manufacturing, transport, and sale of all chewable food products, regardless of packaging, flavor, or additives, including pan masala and other chewable food items containing tobacco and oral nicotine, are now banned for a period of one year, effective from May 23. The Tamil Nadu government emphasized that the consumption of chewing tobacco has been linked to severe health issues and places a significant burden on the state’s finances.

By implementing this ban, the authorities aim to curb the detrimental effects of these products on public health and alleviate the associated financial strain on the state exchequer. This proactive measure highlights the government’s commitment to safeguarding the well-being of its citizens and demonstrates a determination to address the grave health risks posed by the consumption of gutka and pan masala. The temporary ban signifies a step forward in promoting public health awareness and encouraging individuals to make healthier choices for themselves and their communities.

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