2 Oct : Buoyed by the ban on smoking in public places that went into force across the country on Thursday, a jubilant Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss said his next big wish is to see a bar on all tobacco products.
Buoyed by the ban on smoking in public places that went into force across the country today, a jubilant Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss said his next big wish is to see a bar on all tobacco products.
Ramadoss, who persisted with his dream of enforcing the ban on smoking, unfazed by criticism from top Bollywood actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan to members of civil society, took part in the campaign to publicise the salient provisions of the law banning smoking in public places.
Distributing pamphlets highligting the ban to passengers at a bus terminus Aizawl, Ramadoss said "my intention and my aim is to make India a tobacoo-free nation. But I do not have the power to do so."
He said 152 countries had signed a WHO-supported international agreement to ban the production of tobacco products in a phased manner.
"Though we wish to ban the production of tobacco-related products, we cannot do it immediately. We have to take into consideration thousands of farmers who are cultivating tobacco. We have to provide them with alternative employment before introducing such a ban," he said.