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October 26, 2018

Report sought on smoking ban implementation


October 26, 2018

LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Thursday directed the Punjab government to furnish a compliance report regarding enforcement of anti-smoking law at public places and educational institutions in particular.

Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi was hearing a petition moved by Advocate Azhar Siddique questioning non-implementation of “Prohibition of Smoking and Protection of non-Smokers Health Ordinance, 2002”.

The lawyer told the judge that the government failed to enforce the law despite a previous order passed by the court. He said cigarettes were being sold openly in campuses across the province. He pointed out that under the law no person shall smoke or use tobacco in any other form at any public place. He said the law restricted sale, distribution of cigarettes or any other smoking substance or any other tobacco products within 50 meters of any educational institution. The lawyer contended that the non-implementation of the anti-smoking law had been causing health hazard among students and non-smoker citizens.

He asked the court to order the government authorities to ensure enforcement of the law. Justice Qureshi directed the chief secretary to submit a compliance report next week with regard to the implementation of anti-smoking law.

HELMET: Justice Ali Akbar Qureshi dismissed as withdrawn a petition seeking exemption for turban wearing men from wearing safety helmets on motorcycles. A citizen, Muhammad Waseem, filed the petition pleading that he wore a turban following his religious belief. He said his religious belief did not allow him to remove turban from his head. He pointed out that members of Sikh community were also allowed in many countries to wear turban in place of the helmets.

Therefore, the petitioner said, the court should exempt people wearing turban from wearing helmets while riding motorcycles. However, the judge observed that the sole purpose of using helmet was safety of citizens, which could not be compromised at any cost. The judge dismissed the petition as withdrawn when petitioner sought permission to withdraw his plea.

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