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Dull and lazy health department

Published: 14th November 2012 10:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th November 2012 10:37 AM   |  A+A-

By ENS

Several shops continue to sell cigarettes without any pictorial warning on cancer across the state thanks to the lethargic attitude of the Health Department.
 Unlike other states, the officials here do not conduct periodic inspections at the petty shops and duty free shops where these cigarettes are easily available.
 According to Anti- Narcotics Wing the cigarettes are smuggled into the state from the Gulf and South East Asian countries like Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia.
 It said that the Health Department’s directive has prescribed strict action against the offenders.
 “Majority of the cigarettes brought in from the Gulf countries will have the warning written in small letters in Arabic.
 Those coming from the ASEAN countries will not have any warning.
 But none of these will have the picture bearing the cancer warning.
 In Malappuram and Kasargod these cigarettes are available in every shop.
 The stuff is also sent through parcel service,” officials said.
 The officials of the Health Department agreed that inspections are not conducted and no cigarettes have been seized.
 However, they said that action would taken if they come across any such case.
 “The foreign cigarettes have been popular ever since a high number of people started working in the Gulf some 20 years ago.
 In those days it was part of a ‘style’ and even now many youth use foreign brands for it.
 However, compared to Indian cigarettes, their foreign counterparts are much safer,” officials said.



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