New Delhi: The photograph of a
cancer-affected mouth will replace the "softer" pictorial
warnings of scorpion and lung on cigarette and other tobacco
products from June one.
In a notification issued last week, the Ministry of
Health and Family Welfare has zeroed in on the picture with a
caption saying "Tobacco causes mouth cancer".
The picture was finalised after the Government in
collaboration with NGOs carried out studies in seven states
and came to the conclusion that only hard-hitting pictures can
have any impact on people used to smoking or chewing tobacco.
"The new warnings are more stronger in comparison to the
warnings currently being displayed on the packets," a
senior health ministry official said.
The earlier pictorial warnings of lungs and scorpion were
notified on October 2, 2008.
K Srinath Reddy, President of the Public Health
Foundation of India said, "Pictorial warnings which clearly
convey the dreadful health consequences of tobacco consumption
are an effective way of educating and cautioning people.
Replacement of weak and ineffective warnings by stronger
warnings is welcome".
The pictorial warnings had been imposed in 2008 after
a decision by a Group of Ministers headed by Finance Minister