The issuance of a Sri Lankan public administration circular to prohibit the consummation and sale of products made using betel, tobacco and areca nut at state institutes has been approved by the Cabinet. The relevant cabinet paper was presented by the Minister of Health, Nutrition & Indigenous Medicine Rajitha Senaratne.
Issuing a release, the Health Ministry stated this decision was taken considering the adverse effects of betel chewing on one’s health and the environment.Although betel chewing is accepted as a social and a cultural habit, it is a major reason behind the massive number of mouth cancer cases reported in the country, stated the Ministry. Spitting after chewing betel is also a cause of unpleasantness in the environment, pointed out the Ministry.
Under a Gazette Extraordinary issued on 01.09.2016, the production, import, and sale of products containing tobacco have been banned around the country.
According to the Health Minister, issuing a public administration circular to ban the consummation and sale of products made using betel, tobacco and areca nut will make it easier for heads of all state institutes to take necessary administrative procedures against this.