Delhi Police has taken strict action against offenders under COTPA
New Delhi, April 19,2018 – Reducing tobacco usage is a very important imperative to improve health of both users and non-users of tobacco. The Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act, 2003 (COTPA) is a comprehensive legislation and prohibits smoking in public places, direct/indirect advertising and promotion, sale to/by minors, sale within 100 yards of schools and sale of tobacco-products without statutory warnings.
Speaking during a press conference organized by Sambandh Health Foundation, Special Commissioner Law & Order (South) Shri P Kamraj embarked upon a planned implementation of COTPA. Said Shri Kamaraj, “We first trained and sensitized our Police force on COTPA. Thereafter, we started taking action for people caught smoking in public places or selling tobacco within 100 yards of an educational institute. We are happy that all Delhi Police Districts ran campaigns for noticeable deterrence. So far more than 30000 people have been fined under COTPA in Delhi. Sambandh Health Foundation (SHF) and Max India Foundation (MIF) have provided us constant support. We will sustain this important initiative so that behavioural changes take place in smokers thereby also helping non-users who suffer the ill effects of passive smoking. He further added that we have to protect our future generation from evils like tobacco.”
Applauding Delhi Police, Ms Mohini Daljeet Singh, CEO, Max India Foundation, “Delhi has a tobacco prevalence of 17.8%, and this causes more than 10000 deaths per annum attributable to tobacco as per the Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2017. 81 children initiate tobacco usage per day. We commend the good work done by Delhi Police in saving our youth.”
From a level of 700 challans in September 2017, Delhi Police raised this level to 6,000 challans in February 2018. The top three performing districts were honoured at a function on 19 April in Constitution Club of India, New Delhi. Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) Chinmoy Biswal of Southeast district, DCP. Jatin Narwal of North district and DCP. Romil Baniya of South district received mementoes. It is heartening that other Districts have also picked up the pace on this activity. Also, felicitated were Mr P. Kamraj, Special Commissioner Law and Order South, and Mr Praveer Ranjan, Special Commissioner Intelligence for their exemplary leadership and contribution towards enforcing COTPA in Delhi. Cancer patient Anil Kumar in the press conference shared how tobacco destroyed him and family life. He also received a memento.
Dr. Harit Chaturvedi, Chairman Max Oncology and VoTV Patron, said, “50% of all cancers and 90% of oral cancers are caused due to tobacco. If tobacco is eliminated from society, we can prevent 50% of all cancers. In Delhi about 11% of population smokes but this subjects the other 89% to second hand smoke and puts their health at risk. Hence this Campaign by Delhi Police protects the health of Delhi Public and is to be applauded.”
Thanking the Delhi Police for their commendable work, Sanjay Seth, Trustee & Head of Tobacco Control, Sambandh Health Foundation, shared the major drop in tobacco prevalence evidenced in Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2017 in the States of Kerala and Karnataka, where the twin programs of making educational institutions tobacco free and deterrence through implementation of COTPA by Police has shown substantial reduction in tobacco usage. He said that SHF’s team of Dr Heena Shaikh & Pramod Kumar will continue their work on both these programs in Delhi.