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Meghalaya’s East Khasi Hills district deputy commissioner through an order issued on Thursday prohibited sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products to any person who is under 18 years of age.

The order is applicable to all market places and in an area within a radius of 100 yards of any educational institution.

The order further stated that vendors, stalls and other shopkeepers where tobacco products are sold shall display a notice containing the warning ‘Sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products to a person under the age of 18 years is strictly prohibited and is a punishable offence’.

This order was issued in view of reports that vendors, stalls and other shopkeepers are selling cigarettes and other tobacco products to minors at market places and within the proximity of educational institutions openly and in complete violation of Section 6 of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act 2003 (COTPA).

“Any person who contravenes the provisions of Section 6 shall be guilty of offences under this Act and shall be punishable with the imposition of fines and other prescribed penalties,” the prohibitory order further stated.

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