Smokescreen clouds no-smoking zones

Up in smoke

Smokescreen clouds no-smoking zones

In fact, 63 per cent of the places violate the law, highlighted a study carried out by the Centre for Multi Disciplinary Development Research (CMDR), Dharwad, along with Washington DC based Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CFTFK), here on Thursday.

The study was conducted across 37 locations in and around Bangalore and Dharwad between September 2009 and March 2010. The CMDR sent teams to various locations in urban, suburban and rural establishments and recorded the air quality not only in places that had designated smoking rooms (DSR) but also places that strictly did not permit smoking. “It's been six years since the enactment of Indian Cigarettes and Other
Tobacco Products Act (COTPA), yet awareness about second hand smoking is not much,” felt Dr Nayanatara Nayak, in-charge Director and Associate Professor CMDR.

She said that awareness about second hand smoking and the need for establishments with 30 seats and above to set up DSR was quiet low in rural and suburban areas. In addition to this, the display boards to create awareness about anti-smoking was also as big as the size prescribed by COTPA.

“In Dharwad not only the smoking but also non-compliance is high. In fact, the smoke air quality, which the machine picked up was higher than the air quality found in traffic junctions like Badami House or 11th cross Malleswaram, a study which was done by officials from KSPCB,” Dr Nayak said.

Second hand smoke

She further said that the study was to make District Tobacco Control Cell to know the level of second hand smoke in the air besides creating awareness among people. Meanwhile, the study also indicated that 57 per cent of the places were indulged in illegal smoking activity and only 24 per cent had 'No smoking' sign.  In 60 per cent of places people smoked at the entrance or adjacent outdoor areas.

CMDR also felicitated three restaurants from Bangalore - Empire Hotel in Shivajinagar for enforcing a strict no smoking policy and Pub World and Downtown Pub for having DSR, respectively.   

Dr S Prakash, Member Secretary, State Tobacco Control Cell, said that they had collected close to Rs 4 lakh as fines for smoking in public areas, till now.  However, the cell was not able to conduct nicotine study, as mentioned in the Act, as it was not yet notified by Union government. Once the notification came, the cell could then buy equipment to measure air quality in smoking areas, he said.

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