The Punjab government has permanently decided to ban hookah bars running in the state. Earlier the government used to issue temporary orders against the bars after every two months but the scenario won't remain same anymore. Under the present circumstances, section 144 of CrPC is promulgated against the hookah bars across the country for two months, which requires an extension at the end of the period. The extension orders are issued every two months by the district administration. The move came in after a major amendment to the Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply, and Distribution) Act (COTPA), 2003 for the prevention and control of diseases caused by the use of tobacco products. The decision was taken in a special meeting chaired by chief minister Amarinder Singh. An official stated that the development is aimed to check the trend of hookah, hookah bars, and the use of various forms tobacco intake by youngsters. He also added that this will result in a complete ban on running hookah bars across the state. The proposed amendment will now be presented before the Vidhan Sabha, and if passed by the House, will be sent to the President of India, for his assent the official added. As per available data, an hour’s average of hookah smoking contains 20-200 puffs, which can deliver 50 liters of smoke, containing harmful and carcinogenic chemicals, the official said. Health risks of smoking hookah include exposure to toxic chemicals that are not filtered out by the water, and also the risk of infectious disease like tuberculosis resulting from sharing a hookah.
news courtesy: ht