Rotation of Specified Health Warning on Tobacco Products.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare notified new sets of specified health warnings for all tobacco product packs by making an amendment in the Cigarettes and other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labeling) Rules, 2008 vide GSR 331(E) dated 3rd April 2018“Cigarettes and other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labeling) Second Amendment Rules, 2018”. The amended Rules are applicable to w.e.f. 1st September 2018.
Two images were notified vide the above notification with a clause that date of coming into effect of the second image (image 2) of specified health warning, shall be for all tobacco products manufactured or imported after the completion of twelve months from the date of commencement of the first image (image 1).
Image-1 of the said notification came into effect from 1st September 2018 and as such all tobacco products manufactured or packaged or imported on or after 1st September 2019 shall display Image-2.
Telephone Quit-line number “QUIT TODAY CALL 1800-11-2356” is also the part of the health warning. This helps in creating awareness among tobacco users and gives them access to counselling services to effect behaviour change. There shall be one common specified health warning for both smoking and smokeless forms of tobacco products.
The toll-free Tobacco Quit-line Services [1800-11-2356] provides counselling and strategies for quitting tobacco use. As per the recent second round of Global Adult Tobacco Survey [GATS -2, 2016-17] conducted in the age group 15 years and above, 61.9% of current cigarette smokers, 53.8% of current bidi smokers and 46.2% of current smokeless tobacco users thought about quitting because of warning label on packets of cigarette, bidi and smokeless tobacco.
The said notification along with a printable version of the warning, is already available on the Ministry’s website i.e. https://mohfw.gov.in and https://ntcp.nhp.gov.in and has already been shared in all regional languages vide e-mail as requested by the stakeholders. The open files of the image in all regional languages may also be obtained from the Ministry through making a request at firstname.lastname@example.org and/or 011-23062868.