Health Ministry Put Checks on Publishing or Discussing Research on E-Cigarettes

New Delhi: The Union health ministry issued a circular earlier this month, cautioning other government departments, to hold off on publishing any research, reports or studies on e-cigarettes and other devices which release nicotine – posed as an alternative to tobacco addiction – without prior consultation of the ministry.

They also suggest prior consultation for any workshops or events which other government departments may want to hold on e-cigarettes.

However, the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) is scheduled to release a “white paper” tomorrow about this subject, on account of ‘World No Tobacco Day’. Scientists at ICMR have done a study of around 100 research papers on electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) to collate what evidence currently is claimed, on its pros and cons.

A source in the health ministry said that this recent circular was issued because government departments within the health ministry have diverged from the its public position on tobacco control in the past. In August 2018, the health ministry put out a public advisory saying that nicotine devices are a “great health risk to public at large”. Read More

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