Indian Tobacoo giants like Indian Tobacoo Company (ITC) and Godfrey Phillips India (GPI) have suspended their production nationwide from last Wednesday to protest against the recent order by the Centre for health warnings on cigarette and beedi packets. Production has stopped because of the uncertainty over the pictorial warning messages.
Cigarette manufacturers have said that there was no clarity on types of warnings to be carried on the packages so production is stopped for sometime now. Government is going to lose more than Rs. 100 Crore daily in form of excise duty due to this halt in production. ITC has stopped production at five plants across the country since wednesday.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare issued the warning in May 2010 to all cigarette manufactures to show pictorial warnings on all tobacco product packages in the country. This warnings should be like depicting a cancer-stricken mouth as instructed by the ministry but there is some confusion and uncertainity over this issue and companies are hoping that the deadline of December 1, 2010 may be pushed back for sometime.