Larger Pictorial Warning on Tobacco Products Comes Into Force

Bigger pictorial warnings on tobacco products in effect.

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Union Health Minster JP Nadda had said that the government is committed to bigger pictorial warnings on tobacco packaging. (Photo: Reuters)

The requirement that 85 per cent of the display area of packets of all tobacco products should carry pictorial warning of cancer has come into force from Friday

According to the new norm, packets of cigarettes and other tobacco products will have 85 per cent of their area covered by pictorial warnings besides the text warning which has existed for long, said an official statement.

The notification requiring larger warning was made in September 2015. Until its implementation from Friday, the norm was 40 percent pictorial warning on packets of tobacco products.

The implementation comes despite a parliamentary committee determining that the requirement of 85 percent pictorial warning is too harsh. The committee instead recommended 50 percent pictorial warning.

A delegation of the tobacco growers had urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring the norms on graphic health warnings on cigarette packets in line with those prevailing in other tobacco-producing countries.

According to them, many developed countries including the US, Japan and China have only the text and no pictorial warnings on packets of tobacco products.

The union health ministry had made a commitment to the Rajasthan High Court on March 28 that all tobacco products manufactured from April 1 onwards will carry larger pictorial health warnings.

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