The Karnataka High Court has asked the State government to take stringent action against those institutions which had flouted the government's order asking them to put up sign boards declaring sale of tobacco a punishable offence within 100 yards of their premises.
Taking strong exception to the tardy implementation of the government’s May 10 order last year, the high court, on Monday, asked the government to take action against the erring institutions by Monday next week and submit an action taken report the next day.
The direction was given by the division Bench of the court comprising Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justice A S Bopanna which heard a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on the matter.
The State government has been instructed to issue letters within one week to aided colleges to implement the order of putting up signboards or face loss of grants and recognition to the institute.
The PIL filed by Cancer Aid Patients Association in its petition submitted a list of 41 schools and colleges in Bangalore, which were inspected. None of the institutions had put up any display boards outside their premises, they contended. The petitioners said these very institutions also had cigarette and tobacco vendors within 100 yards of their premises selling tobacco products which was prohibited under Section 6 of Control of Tobacco Products Act (COTPA).
Christ University, Baldwin Boys High School, Sophia high School, Jyothi Nivas College, Vijaya College, National College, Jayanagar; National College, Basavanagudi; Garden City College, Mount Carmel College, National Public School, Indiranagar and Maharani Laxmi Ammani College for Women were listed among the errant institutions. The state government had issued an order in May 2010 directing educational institutions to put up signboards prohibiting sale of tobacco products.