E-cigarettes: What is vaping? How dangerous it is for you?
New Delhi Sep 19: The Government on Thursday issued an ordinance to ban e-cigarettes making the production, import, export, transport, sale or advertisements of such "alternative" smoking devices a cognizable offence attracting jail term and fine.
First time violators will face a jail term of up to one year and a fine of Rs 1 lakh. For subsequent offences, a jail term of up to three years or a fine of Rs 5 lakh, or both according to the ordinance. The storage of e-cigarettes shall now be punishable with imprisonment of up to six months or a fine of up to Rs 50,000 or both.
Earlier on Wednesday, the Union Cabinet decided to ban production, import, distribution and sale of electronic cigarettes, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said.
What are e-cigarettes?
E-cigarettes are known by many different names. They are often called e-cigs, e-hookahs, vapes, vape pens, tank systems, or mods. They come in many different shapes and sizes-some look like a regular cigarette, some look very different. There is a lot of talk about e-cigarettes. Some of it is true, but some of it is not.
E-cigarettes are battery powered devices that work by heating a liquid into an aerosol that the user inhales and exhales.
The e-cigarette liquid typically contains nicotine, propylene glycol, glycerin, flavorings, and other chemicals. Nicotine is the addictive drug found in regular cigarettes and other tobacco products. Research shows that e-cigarette aerosol often contains substances that can be harmful, including flavoring chemicals (like diacetyl, which is linked to lung disease), metals (like lead), and other cancer-causing chemicals.
What is vaping?
The word 'vaping' refers to inhaling the "vapor" of an e-cigarette.
Why did the govt ban them?
The government said the decision to ban e-cigarettes is aimed at protecting the youth, the section that is most vulnerable to the health hazards of e-cigarettes.
"These novel products come with attractive appearances and multiple flavours and their use has increased exponentially and has acquired epidemic proportions in developed countries, especially among youth and children," the government said in a statement.
It said the ban on e-cigarettes will help "protect population, especially the youth and children, from the risk of addiction through e-cigarettes".
Prior to this announcement, 15 states and one Union territory had already banned e-cigarettes. These include: Punjab, Karnataka, Mizoram, Kerala, Jammu & Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Puducherry, Rajasthan, Meghalaya, Odisha and Nagaland.
How dangerous is vaping?
While the possible long-term health effects of e-cigarettes aren't yet clear, there have been recent reports of serious lung disease in some people using e-cigarettes or other vaping devices. Symptoms have included:
- E-cigarettes usually contain nicotin
- E-cigarettes are harmful for youth, young adults, and pregnant women
- E-cigarettes may contain other harmful substances
Cough, trouble breathing, or chest pain
Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
Fatigue, fever, or weight loss