Beedi Trade In India: AIIMS Call For Strict Regulation and Taxation
The traditional hand-rolled cigarettes made from tobacco contain high levels of nicotine, tar, carbon monoxide and other harmful chemicals that makes it more dangerous than regular cigarettes. A study recommends increasing tax and strengthening regulations on the beedi industry to reduce consumption and associated mortalities. This was conducted by the School of Public Health at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Jodhpur.
The study also recommends that the industry lose the status of “cottage industry”. As per sources, Dr Kuldeep Singh Sachdeva, Regional Director, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, South East Asia, stated, “Due to its treatment as a cottage industry, it is subjected to minimal taxation, and a huge segment goes unregulated and untaxed. In stark contradiction to the WHO FCTC recommendation of 75 per cent taxation of all tobacco products, beedi taxation reaches only 22 per cent while being enforced only on 20.6 percent of the market share”.