Health Ministry asks OTTs to post anti-tobacco warnings
The Union Health Ministry has made it mandatory for OTT platforms to display anti-tobacco warnings as seen in cinema halls and television programmes.
An Overview of the News
The amendment to the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act, 2004 requires online platforms to show at least 30 seconds of anti-tobacco health spots at the beginning and middle of their programmes.
A prominent static message stating "Tobacco causes cancer" or "Tobacco kills" must be displayed at the bottom of the screen when displaying tobacco products or their use.
Warning messages should be legible with black font on a white background and health warnings, spots and disclaimers should be in the language of the material.
Display of tobacco brands, product placement and use of tobacco in promotional material is prohibited.
India has implemented measures to reduce tobacco use including 85% pictorial warnings on cigarette packets since 2018.
India's data from the Global Youth Tobacco Survey shows that tobacco use has declined by 42% among school-going children aged 13-15 over the past decade.
The decision was taken by the Health Ministry after consultations with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B) and other stakeholders.
More than 7 million deaths are caused by direct tobacco use, while 1.2 million deaths are due to secondhand smoke exposure.
More than 80% of the world's 1.3 billion tobacco users live in low- and middle-income countries.
In 2020, 22.3% of the global population used tobacco (36.7% men, 7.8% women).
WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC):
Adopted by WHO member states in 2003, it is currently ratified by 182 countries.
It aims to address the tobacco epidemic and its harmful effects.
New and Emerging Nicotine and Tobacco Products:
Heated Tobacco Products (HTPs): Toxicity similar to other tobacco products, proved no less harmful.
Electronic-cigarettes: injurious to health, especially risky for young people and pregnant women.
MPOWER measures were launched in 2007 for effective tobacco control implementation.
MPOWER measures include monitoring, protection, termination support, warnings, advertising restrictions, and taxes.
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