BJP MP Dilip Gandhi today claimed that there is no Indian study to confirm that tobacco use leads to cancer. Mr. Gandhi’s remarks coincided with tomorrow’s deadline for increasing size of pictorial warnings on tobacco products being reportedly deferred by the government amid demands by tobacco lobbies.
The MP is heading a parliamentary panel on subordinate legislation examining the provisions of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act. He said all studies about health hazards of tobacco consumption have come from abroad and there has been no research by the Indian government whether tobacco causes cancer or not.
Mr. Gandhi said a study needs to be done in Indian context where four crore people in Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh are dependent on bidi-making through Tendupatta.
Reacting to comments, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said that he does not agree with Mr. Gandhi’s views and there can not be compromised on scientific facts on tobacco consumption.