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MONITOR: Tobacco control Act violations in Punjab

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  • Hemant Goswami
    MONITOR: Tobacco control Act violations in Punjab Issue 7 ... FIRST POLICE CASE AGAINST TOBACCO COMPANY IN CHANDIGARH FOR VIOLATING TOBACCO CONTROL ACT
    Message 1 of 1 , May 2, 2006
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      MONITOR: Tobacco control Act violations in Punjab
      Issue 7
      -------

      FIRST POLICE CASE AGAINST TOBACCO COMPANY IN CHANDIGARH FOR VIOLATING
      TOBACCO CONTROL ACT
      ******************************************

      After a struggle of about two year since the promulgation of
      the "Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of
      Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production,
      Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003" activists in Chandigarh finally
      succeeded in getting a case registered against Godfrey Phillips India
      Ltd. for violations of Section 5 and Rule 4 of the tobacco control
      legislation.

      In the wake of a new promotional campaign by the tobacco
      company "Godfrey Phillips India Ltd" wherein they had recruited young
      boys and girls to promote and publicise a brand of cigarette, Burning
      Brain Society has been complaining to the Chandigarh Administration
      and the Police since April 17, 2006. On 25th April when two of the
      employees of the tobacco company were seen promoting a cigarette
      brand and distributing promotional material of cigarettes, the
      undersigned immediately alerted the Director Health Services and the
      Police about the violations of Tobacco Control Act and illegal
      activity, and made another formal complaint. The pressure which was
      maintained (On the Police and DHS) since a week preceding this
      complaint helped.

      The police reached the spot and seized all the promotional material
      and the cigarettes used for sampling. First time the provisions of
      Section 12 & 13 of COTPA were put to use. The two employees of the
      companies were also arrested but later let off. The complaint made by
      BBS mentions the name of the Chairman of the tobacco company Mr. R.A.
      Shah, President Mr. K. K. Modi, Senior Vice President, Nita Kapoor
      among other officials and who are alleged to be the mastermind behind
      this promotional scheme.

      The Burning Brain Society team expressed its joy over the
      registration of the case and contributed to the continuous campaign
      against illegal promotion of tobacco products across the region. It's
      a small battle won in the long war against tobacco. Thanks for your
      support.

      Hemant Goswami
      Chairperson,
      Burning Brain Society
      Email: nl0604@...
      -----------------------------------------------

      EVIDENCE:
      Godfrey Phillips India Ltd. had engaged a team of youngsters by to
      promote the cigarette brands marketed by them. They had told the
      youngsters that it's a research activity and not an advertising or
      marketing campaign.

      Watch the still pictures of the activity at;
      http://gallery.globalink.org/v/members/goswamih/gpi_india
      --------------------------------------------------------------


      VIOLATIONS: What all provisions constitute violation under Section 5
      of the Tobacco control Act.

      Ø Any direct or indirect promotion of any tobacco product(s) or
      any trade mark or brand name associated with any tobacco product in
      exchange of any sponsorship, gift or prize.

      Ø Affixing more than two boards, exceeding the size with one
      side 60 cms X 90 cms even inside a tobacco warehouse.

      Ø The top area of 25% of each advertising board of the specified
      size shall contain a waning which should read (i) Tobacco Causes
      Cancer, or (ii) Tobacco Kills.

      Ø The rules also state that such board can contain only the
      brand name or picture of the tobacco product and nothing else.

      Ø Even oral promotion or advertising constitute an offense.

      PENAL PROVISIONS: What is the Punishment for violation of the
      provisions of the tobacco control Act?

      Section 22 of the Act reads that; Whoever contravenes the provision
      of section 5 shall, on conviction, be punishable— (a) in the case of
      first conviction, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to
      two years or with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees or
      with both, and (b) in the case of second or subsequent conviction
      with imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years and with
      fine which may extend to five thousand rupees.
      -----------------------------------------------------------------

      MONITOR: Reporting violations of Tobacco Control Act
      TambakooKiLLs
      -------------

      Dear Friends,
      We encourage you to report violations of The Cigarette and Other
      Tobacco Products Act, rulings of which came into effect on April 1,
      2006. TambakooKiLLs is compiling a weekly issue of Monitor.

      If you spot:

      1) Any tobacco advertisement except on point of sale (retail shop)

      2) At point of sale (tobacco retail outlet)
      a) if the tobacco advertisement is more than 60cm x 45 cm
      b) if health warning is NOT `Tobacco Kills' or `Tobacco Causes Cancer'
      c) if any brand name, or picture depicting brand name or any
      promotional message is displayed
      (The ACT allows 60cmx45cm board on point of sale retail shop, with
      ONLY type of tobacco displayed – no mention of brand, no picture, no
      promotional message etc)

      3) If you spot any character in any movie or TV using tobacco on-
      screen
      (The ACT warrants movies or TV serials etc made earlier to scroll
      warnings, please report if no warnings are being scrolled in black-
      white for movies/TV serials made earlier than April 1, 2006)

      Please send your reports to:
      tambakooKills@...

      -M O N I T O R ------------------------
      MONITOR is a weekly feature of TambakooKills, reporting violations of
      the rulings issued by Directorate of Health Services, Government of
      India, for The Cigarette and other tobacco Products Act.

      TambakooKills is the largest eGroup listed by YahooGroups Inc in
      healthcare category in the world, and it's subscribers across India
      are participating in this civil society reporting process.

      Please SEND YOUR REPORTS to TambakooKills@... ]
      ----------------------------------------

      Complete text of the RULING issued by Directorate of Health Services
      is available online at:
      http://uk.groups.yahoo.com/group/TambakooKills/message/12

      -----------------------------------------------------------
      LAST ISSUE of TambakooKiLLs MONITOR is available online at:
      http://uk.groups.yahoo.com/group/TambakooKills/message/18
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