CEOs told to ensure ban on sale of tobacco products around schools

With drugs and tobacco consumption among students rising alarmingly in J&K, the Directorate of School Education (DSE) has directed all Chief Education Officers (CEOs) in Jammu to check the shops selling tobacco products close to schools.The CEOs have also been asked to ensure ban on the sale of tobacco products within 100 yards of the premises of all educational institutions.

The CEOs are directed to submit a monthly report to the DSE for follow-up ensuring a complete ban of tobacco products in and around educational institutions in the Jammu province.

An order issued by the directorate says.The order also asked the officials to direct a copy of the action taken to the Commissioner/Secretary to the Government School Education Department as well. The Education Department should ensure compliances under Section 6 (a) and (b) of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act (COTPA), 2003, and ensure that “No Smoking” signboards were displayed in and around the educational institutions.Minister for School Education Naeem Akhter recently launched a “Tobacco-free educational institutions” campaign in the state. All Chief Education Officers in the districts of the Jammu region should now ensure regular monitoring of Section 6 of COTPA.“They should also work with the district police to initiate action to book those violating COTPA near educational institutions and submit a monthly report to the directorate indicating the action taken and follow-up actions initiated every month,” Seema Gupta, Director, Voluntary Health Association of India (VHAI), said.As per Section 6 of COTPA, there is a ban on the sale of tobacco to and by minors and prohibition on sale of tobacco products within 100 yards of educational institutions.

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