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The West Bengal government will ban the production and sale of gutkha and pan masala containing tobacco or nicotine for a period of one year with effect from Thursday.
The manufacturing, storage, distribution, transportation, demonstration and sale of gutkha and pan masala will be completely banned under the Food Safety Act, a notification issued recently by the Health and Family Welfare Department said.
States like neighbouring Bihar, Uttarakhand and Rajasthan have already banned pan masala containing tobacco, nicotine, magnesium carbonate and mineral oil.
Over 20 per cent of the population in West Bengal use smokeless tobacco, out of which 22.8 per cent are male and 17.2 per cent are female, according to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2 (GATS 2).
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