Outdoor Pollution Better Than Smoking Zones
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24 September 2010
Study Finds Tobacco Act Norms Violated
If you are tired complaining about pollution during traffic jams and on roads, digest this: indoor air pollution in many places is much higher than the levels outdoor. The primary reason: tobacco.
Such alarming data were the findings of a study conducted by the the Centre for Multi Disciplinary Development Research (CMDR), in association with Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, Roswell Park Cancer Institute and Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use.
Illegal smoking was detected in 45 out of the 79 locations sampled. Of the 45 places sampled in Karnataka, only 11 had any of the required ‘no–smoking’ signages. Sixty percent of the places showed smoking activities in the entrance or other adjacent outdoor areas. People here were exposed to harmful air upon entry and exit and smoke could drift to indoor places.
In Bangalore, illegal smoking was found in 9 out of the 14 locations sampled. Places where indoor smoking was observed had high levels of air pollution (average level 143 microgram/m3). Of the nine places observed, seven did not have the required ‘nosmoking’ signages. In fact, there were hardly any signs even in shops near educational institutions as stipulated in The Control of Tobacco Products Act (COTPA). Researchers found smoking was very heavy in Dharwad and so were violations of rules.
HC deadline for signages
According to the joint director, state antitobacco cell, Dr S Prakash: Rs 4 lakh has been collected as fine since October 2008 for non–compliance with COPTA in Karnataka, which is better than in some other states. However, Karnataka has also received an order from the high court which has given them a three–month deadline to implement signages in shops near educational institutions.