news Tuesday, April 07, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute| April 4, 2015| 11.01 am IST Hitting out at BJP MP Dilip Gandhi for questioning the link between tobacco products and cancer, former Union Minster of Health, Anbumani Ramadoss said that it was the government’s responsibility to combat tobacco usage in the country.  Saying that pictorial warnings on tobacco products were introduced during his term as Union Health Minister, he said,” We faced a lot of opposition, 120 MPs opposed the move, but we introduced the warnings. The tobacco lobby is very strong in India.” Criticising Dilip Gandhi’s statement questioning availability of any Indian studies linking cancer and tobacco he said, “A Member of Parliament said that there is no study to link tobacco and cancer, another asked if we can ban sugar as that’s harmful. These statements will put us in shame in the global area.” "Its intriguing that the ministry having the knowledge of hundreds of globally acclaimed research institutions in india but defers this notification on the advise of a member of parliament" "When a MP recommends that it should be deferred I don't know why the union health ministry has taken this decision. Its not necessary to take up the recommendation," he said. When Shyama Charan Gupta, another BJP MLA, had compared sugar to the ill effects of tobacco, the question of Conflict of Interest played a major factor as he also happened to be a beedi-baron.  About Gupta, Ramadoss said, “If anyone is conflict of interest, that person should not be a member of such a committee. The government should remove such a person if he/she does not abstain.” "I request MPs to stop saying ignorant things on national television," he added calling out to the Prime Minister to intervene in the issue. 
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