Peshawar Uni fails to ban tobacco use, sale

PESHAWAR, June 22(Dawn): The administration of the University of Peshawar has failed to impose a ban on the use and sale of tobacco inside the campus, despite an announcement last month.

"Most of the shops in the university campus are selling cigarettes openly. The administration had declared the campus as a 'tobacco-free zone'," said an official.

According to him, the administration had issued an order on May 22, banning the sale and purchase of cigarettes and all sorts of tobacco products from May 31, the World No Tobacco Day.

"Most of the university officials purchase cigarettes from us. Nobody had asked us about violation of the order," a shopkeeper at the Coffee Shop, University Campus, told this correspondent.

It is a matter of grave concern that the director administration whose office is located in the Coffee Shop has failed to strictly prohibit the sale of cigarettes.

A senior teacher said that the university staff and the students were also against the ban. "If the ban is implemented in letter and spirit, then the teachers, employees and students would go outside the campus to buy cigarettes," he added.

A notification issued in this connection last month said that all shops and canteens in the campus were directed to exhaust the existing stock by May 31 after which they would not be allowed to sell or purchase tobacco items.

The university administration's directives banning sale of cigarettes had been issued after a verbal commitment made with the World Health Organisation by the vice chancellor.

The directives had warned the owners of canteens and shopkeepers that violation of the order could lead to cancellation of allotment contracts.

A letter carrying information about the hazardous affects of smoking had also been issued by the university administration, but it somehow had gone missing.

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