Spokesman News Service, Chandigarh (12th Oct'18): In pursuance of the Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Restrictions on Sales) Regulations, 2011, the manufacture, storage, sale or distribution of Gutkha, Paan Masala (Containing tobacco or nicotine), processed /flavoured/scented chewing tobacco and any other food products containing Tobacco or Nicotine as ingredient by whatsoever name these are called as final products, whether packaged or unpackaged and / or sold as one product or through packaged as separate products available in the market, is prohibited for a period of one year in the State of Punjab, from the date of issue of notification, informed Mr. KS Pannu, Commissioner Food and Drug Administration Punjab. A notification in this context has been issued on October 09, 2018.
Mr. Pannu said that it has been observed that to circumvent the ban on the sale of gutkha, the manufacturers are selling paan masala (without tobacco) with flavourved chewing tobacco in separate sachets but often they are conjoint and sold together by the same vendors in the same premises . This is done intentionally so that consumers can buy the paan masala and flavoured chewing tobacco and mix both the articles as a concoction to replace gutkha. Hence, instead of the earlier "ready to consume admixture", paan masala and flavoured/scented chewing tobacco are being used to serve the same purpose. In view of this processed /flavoured/scented chewing tobacco, Gutkha and Paan Masala containing tobacco and have been banned in the State.