Friday October 18, 2019

NGO Welcomes Ban on Smoking in Goa Government Offices

All the government departments are required to submit a compliance report to the Directorate of Health Services by June 30

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The new national law bans indoor smoking at schools, hospitals and government offices. Pixabay

The National Organisation for Tobacco Eradication on Wednesday welcomed a recent decision of the Goa Health Ministry to declare government offices and buildings in the state tobacco-free.

General secretary of the anti-tobacco organisation, Goa-based oncologist Dr Shekhar Salkar said that the ban will “help to curb the proliferation of smoking as well as the use of other tobacco products in the State”.

New Year Eve Party
Goa. (Wikimedia Commons)

On May 27 this year, the state health ministry had banned the use of tobacco in all government offices and buildings as part of the central government’s ‘Swachh Bharat, Swasth Bharat’ campaign.

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All the government departments are required to submit a compliance report to the Directorate of Health Services by June 30.

“Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2 shows 9.7 per cent of adults in Goa consume tobacco in some form or the other. This move will surely curtail the tobacco consumption,” Salkar said. (IANS)

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Goa Tourism Department Giving Finishing Touches to its Anti-Litter Campaign

Those who are destroying the beauty of Goa by sitting with a beer on a beach and drinking openly or cooking with a cylinder or littering will be fined

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Goa, Tourism, Litter
The Corporation functions under the aegis of the state Tourism Ministry. Pixabay

The Goa Tourism department is giving finishing touches to its anti-litter campaign, which is aimed at deterring tourists from creating nuisance on beaches and public areas, that includes drinking and cooking in public or littering.

Speaking to reporters in Panaji on Friday after chairing a meeting of the Goa Tourism Development Corporation’s Board, the chairman Dayanand Sopte said, that the department is in the process of finalising the government agency for levying of fines on errant tourists. The Corporation functions under the aegis of the state Tourism Ministry.

“Those who are destroying the beauty of Goa by sitting with a beer on a beach and drinking openly or cooking with a cylinder or littering will be fined. We are in the process of finalising the agency which will impose the fine,” Sopte, a BJP MLA said.

In January this year, the state legislative assembly passed amendments to the Goa Tourist Place (Protection and Maintenance) Act, 2001, which prohibits drinking alcohol, cooking in public places, including beaches and breaking of glass bottles in public.

Goa, Tourism, Litter
Speaking to reporters in Panaji on Friday after chairing a meeting of the Goa Tourism Development Corporation’s Board, the chairman Dayanand Sopte said, that the department is in the process of finalising the government agency for levying of fines on errant tourists. Pixabay

Individual offenders from now will be fined Rs. 2,000 for the offences, according to the amendment. If the offences are committed by a group of people, the fine has been hiked to Rs. 10,000.

The crackdown comes amid demands from travel and tourism industry stakeholders who had blamed the Tourism ministry, for a drop in quantity as well as quality of tourists visiting the state in recent times.

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Goa is one of the top beach tourism destinations in the country and attracted nearly eight million tourists last year. (IANS)