Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman during a press conference which commenced soon after a cabinet meeting said the government had given the approval to ban E-cigarettes in the country.”The production, manufacture, import/export, transport, sale, distribution, storage and advertising related to e-cigarettes will be banned”, Ms. Sitharaman said.
The government is expected to pass an ordinance in this regard.E- hookahs will also be banned. The draft bill proposes the offense to be punishable by jail for up to one year fine up to ?1 lakh or both for first-time offenders, and jail of up to three years and fine up to ?5 lakh for repeat offenders. Storage of e-cigarettes shall also be punishable with imprisonment of up to six months or fine up to ?50,000 or both.
India has the second-largest number of tobacco users (268 million ) in the world – of these at least 12 lakh die every year from tobacco-related diseases.