The caretaker government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has enforced Section 144 to regulate the storage, sale, and use of e-cigarettes and vapes in proximity to educational institutions, especially to minors. This decision, outlined in an official notification from the Home and Tribal Affairs Department, comes in response to the concerning surge in the use of electronic cigarettes and vaping devices, particularly among children and youth in the province.
The order emphasizes the growing apprehension about the widespread use of these products, attributing it to the highly addictive substance, nicotine. Recognizing the substantial health risks associated with e-cigarettes and vapes, particularly for children, youth, and pregnant women, the provincial government has taken steps to address the issue.
Under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1898, the ban has been imposed for a duration of 60 days. The order includes a complete prohibition on selling e-cigarettes and vapes to individuals below the age of 21 years throughout the province. Additionally, a ban on the sale, storage, and use of these products within a 50-meter radius of all educational institutions in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has been instituted.
The move aligns with the governor’s support for the civil society’s call to ban the use and sale of e-cigarettes and vaping, as expressed during a meeting on January 11.