In Jammu and Kashmir, in a voter expsignificant move aimed at safeguarding public health and enhancing the erience, the Chief Election Officer of the Union Territory has declared all polling stations across J&K  as tobacco-free zones. 

This decision follows a directive from the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir, urging the Chief Election Office to ensure smoke-free environments in the polling stations. The move aligns with the Government of India’s regulations and the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control

(WHO-FCTC), emphasizing protection from second-hand smoke exposure. “All public places, including election booths, are to be declared smoke-free in accordance with the Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA-2003) and the subsequent rules implemented since October 2, 2008,” read the communication from the Chief Election Officer to all district election officers. Notably, Jammu & Kashmir is among the first States/UTs where such an order has been issued, mirroring a similar directive in Tripura.

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