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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 51  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 129-132

Impact of 'gutkha and pan masala ban' in the state of Maharashtra on users and vendors

Department of Preventive Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
G A Mishra
Department of Preventive Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-509X.138182

Clinical trial registration NCT01896375

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Background: Gutkha and pan masala contain harmful and carcinogenic chemicals. Hence, Maharashtra Government banned their manufacture, storage, distribution and sale on 19 th July 2012 for a year. Objectives: The objective of this study is to determine the impact of the ban on gutkha and pan masala on its users and vendors. Materials and Methods: A cross- sectional study was conducted among gutkha and/or pan masala users and tobacco vendors in the selected area of Mumbai city, 4-6 months after the implementation of the ban. The parameters studied included knowledge regarding the ban, usage or discontinuation of use of the banned products, product availability, withdrawal symptoms among quitters, etc., Results: A total of 68 users and five tobacco vendors were enrolled in this study. Although all users were aware about the ban on gutkha, very few knew about the ban on pan masala. Only 5.9% of users knew that currently the ban had been declared for only 1 year. Electronic media was the main source of information regarding the ban as reported by 45.6% users. All users and vendors were in favor of the ban. After the ban, 23.53% gutkha users quit their habit while 55.88% reduced their gutkha consumption. Non-availability of gutkha was the most important reason stated by the gutkha users for quitting or reducing the consumption. In spite of the ban, gutkha is still available in the market, but at an increased cost or in a different form. Conclusion: Nearly 23.53% of gutkha users have quit their habit post-ban despite its availability through illegal sources.


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