Chandigarh: The Punjab government on Saturday issued strict instructions to all deputy commissioners to immediately cancel the licences of those hotels, restaurants and commercial institutions that are found violating the anti-smoking law COTPA-2003.
A communique issued by Chief Secretary Sarvesh Kaushal to all deputy commissioners and heads of departments pointed out that smoking, especially passive smoking, was dangerous to the health.
He said the government has already declared 18 districts as smoke free and was in the process of making Punjab total smoke-free within next three months by implementing the order in remaining three districts.
Kaushal said that it was a matter of great regret that 12 percent population of Punjab still consumes tobacco in one or other form. "Licences of hotels, restaurants and commercial institutions violating the anti-smoking law must be immediately cancelled," he said.
He said every deputy commissioner was duty bound to enforce the provisions of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) and submit a monthly report to him.
Emphasising on strict implementation of COTPA, the chief secretary said all enforcement and counselling departments especially police, education, local government, transport and excise and taxation have to act in unison to enforce COTPA and DCs would ensure synergy in their cooperation for enforcing the act in its true spirits.
The communique instructed all departments to enforce ban on cigarettes and other tobacco products including flavoured tobacco.