Customs Dept diktat to officers: Enforce e-cigarette ban strictly

Shishir Sinha New Delhi | Updated on October 08, 2019

The border tax authority, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Custom (CBIC) have asked all its officers to ‘strictly’ enforce the ban on electronic cigarettes.

On September 18, the Cabinet approved promulgation of an ordinance banning electronic cigarettes. Now the government wants to prevent illegal export-import of e-cigarettes and the CBIC, in a circular, highlighted the products to be watched out for as stated by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT).

According to the DGFT notification, any part or component such as refill pods, atomisers, cartridges, etc, including all forms of Electronic-Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), heat not burn products, e-hookah and the like devices have been prohibited.

Accordingly, CBIC officers were directed, “to ensure strict implementation of the DGFT’s notification, so that any attempts of import/export of such goods can be effectively prevented.”

Electronic-cigarettes are battery-operated devices that produce aerosol by heating a solution containing nicotine, which is the addictive substance in combustible cigarettes. These include all forms of ENDS, Heat Not Burn Products, e-Hookah and the like devices. These novel products come with attractive appearances and multiple flavours and their use has increased exponentially and has acquired epidemic proportions in developed countries, especially among youth and children.

Upon promulgation of the Ordinance, any production, manufacturing, import, export, transport, sale (including online sale), distribution or advertisement (including online advertisement) of e-cigarettes will be a cognisable offence punishable with an imprisonment of up to one year or fine up to ₹1 lakh or both for the first offence; and imprisonment of up to three years and fine up to ₹5 lakh for a subsequent offence.

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Published on October 08, 2019
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