Govt to Crackdown on Smoking at Public Places


KL Report


In an attempt to crackdown on smoking in public places, the J&K government has empowered all the gazetted officers to take action against the people who violate law by smoking at public places.

The government has empowered all these officers including the heads of police stations under SRO-394 of 2008 to prevent smoking at public places within their respective jurisdiction by issuing challans and fining the violators.

This was stated by the government in legislative assembly on Friday in response to a question asked by the ruling National Conference lawmaker, Mir Saifullah who had sought information about the steps taken by the government to enforce the laws banning cigarette smoking at public places.

The government informed the house that serious measures were taken to enforce the law banning smoking at public places. “Raids were conducted at 47,237 public places during the first eight months this year and an amount of Rs 4,12,265 was recovered from 6,282 violators,” the government told the house.

“Powers have been vested with Director Health Services, Medical Superintendents, Tehsildars, Executive Officers, College Principals, School Heads, Food Inspectors and officers and in charge of Police Stations to prevent cigarette smoking at public places within their jurisdiction,” the government said in a written response.

Markets, public parks, restaurants, hotels, school, college and university premises are some of the public places notified under law. The menace of cigarette smoking at public places has become a routine in Kashmir. Although there are strict laws against smoking in public places, these are not being implemented because of one or the other reason.

On Friday, the government informed the assembly that designated officers are time and again sensitized about their duties and by and large the law is being strictly enforced throughout the state. The government stated that the public places are being regularly inspected and action is initiated against found violating the provisions of the Act & Rules.


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