(CNN)Tobacco companies are advertising products around educational institutions and intentionally targeting children in India, a recent study found.
Tobacco companies are targeting children in India, study says
Monitoring advertising across 20 cities, the researchers detail the methods through which the tobacco industry has been flouting rules, particularly by selling to vulnerable children and youngsters.
Companies have been advertising tobacco products through posters and seizing upon the ability to sell products at shops near schools, along with low prices and the sale of single cigarettes.
Indian law prohibits the sale of tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18 and bans stores from selling tobacco products within 100 yards of any educational institution.
State governments provide licenses to tobacco shops under the condition "that the shops authorized for selling tobacco products cannot sell any non-tobacco product such as toffees, candies, chips, biscuits, soft drinks, etc., which are essentially meant for children," said Ashwini Choubey, the minister of state for health and family welfare.
But poor enforcement of laws and a lack of checks in place have enabled the illegal sale of tobacco near schools, experts say.
Implementation of Indian laws on tobacco consumption is extremely poor, as agencies have neither the capacity nor the will to do so, said Hemant Upadhyay, an adviser with the voluntary action group Consumer VOICE.