Andhra Pradesh government has now banned the manufacture, storage, distribution and transportation of gutkha/pan masala products. The government has now announced that the usage and selling of gutka products containing tobacco and nicotine as ingredients as well as chewing tobacco products such as khaini, and other flavoured tobacco have been banned for a period of one year. The decision was announced in order by the Commissioner of Food Safety.
According to the order issued by the food safety department head, substances including gutkha/pan masala and other chewable tobacco products have been placed under banned items under Section 30, sub-section (2) and Clause (a) of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006. The Andhra Pradesh government had enacted the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 in order to ensure safe food consumption for the people.
The commissioner of food safety, in the order, issued mentions various Supreme Court judgments that confirm the placing of Gutkha/Pan masala containing Tobacco and Nicotine products are food items as defined under section 3 (1) of FSS Act, 2006. The order also notes scientific reports of ICMR and NIHFW claiming the substances are harmful to humans. The order mentions that chewing Gutka and Pan masala products can cause malignant conditions like Oesophagus cancer, stomach cancer, pancreatic cancer, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. According to the order signed December 6, such products sold in pouches, sachets, containers etc have been banned in the state for a period of one year starting Tuesday, December 7, 2021.
Earlier in September, the Haryana government extended its ban on the sale and manufacturing of gutka and pan masala for another year. A notification in this regard was issued by the state government's Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) which reads that the sale and purchase of tobacco products have been prohibited for a period of one year starting from September 7, 2021, and will remain in effect till September 2022.
Earlier in April 2020, the Haryana government prohibited the sale of chewing gum for a period of three months and further implemented a ban on the sale and manufacture of gutka and pan masala. In a similar step, the Uttar Pradesh government in 2020 banned the manufacture and sale of pan masala for containing the spread of Coronavirus. This was followed by other states such as Jharkhand and Maharashtra.