No tobacco product exempt from pictorial warning : Minister

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New Delhi, Mar 19 (UNI) Health Minister Anbumoni Ramadoss clarified today that no tobacco product was exempted from the pictorial warning, but the mandatory depiction of skull and bone was made optional.

Replying to questions on warnings on tobacco products in the Lok Sabha, he said the Cigarette and other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labelling) Rules, 2006, were notified on July 5, 2006, and the provisions were to come into effect on February one, 2007.

However, an amendment to this Act and the rules was carried out through a notification on September 29, 2007 whereby the mandatory depiction of skull and bone was made optional and the rules were revised accordingly.

The revised rules had been notified on March 16 this year.

"The decision regarding the date of implementation of the rules is pending as matter is subjudice in the Shimla High Court and will be decided during the next date of hearing on March 24," he said, while pointing out that no tobacco product was exempted from the pictorial warning.

Dr Ramadoss said the Informationa and Broadcasting Ministry had issued a notification on February 25 this year, banning direct or surrogate advertisements on tobacco products and liquor in newspapers and on television.

UNI SH RR DB1341

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