State Health Minister K K Shylaja on Thursday directed the additional chief secretary (health) to issue an order banning the production, sale and advertisement of 'electronic cigarette' alias 'e-cigarette'.
E-cigarettes are handy devices that emit doses of vaporised nicotine. An official release here today said that there were media reports that the e-cigarette market was flourishing in Kerala targeting youth and children.
The state drugs enforcement authorities had also found that the device is widely used for smoking ganja, hashish and other narcotic substance. It was also found that use of e-cigarettes among children would result in indiscriminate use of original cigarettes and other substances in the long run, it said.
A series of studies conducted in the US and Japan has proved that the usage of e-cigarette would cause cancer and heart ailments. The e-cigarettes are being marketed in Kerala through unauthorised courier services and online sites, it said.
An expert committee appointed by the Centre to study the ill effects of e-cigarette had recommended banning the device in the country in 2014 itself, the release said, adding that the Indian Medical Association was also in favour of banning it.