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Huff and e-puff: On e-cigarette ban

Given conflicting claims about health effects, India should tread cautiously on e-cigarettes

In a recent hearing on a public interest litigation(मुकदमा) in the Delhi High Court, the Delhi government said it was planning to ban e-cigarettes. If it follows through, the NCT will join States such as Karnataka and Maharashtra in the ban. The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(कल्याण) has taken a stand against e-cigarettes. But is a ban the right approach to regulate this technology, given that combustible(जलनेवाला/ईंधन/दहनशील)cigarettes are freely available across India? The controversy exists partly because it is a new and rapidly(शीघ्रता से) evolving(विकसित /उद्विकासी) technology. This makes it hard for researchers to study the health effects. Still, the evidence(सबूत/प्रमाण) so far indicates(संकेत करना/प्रकट करना) that e-cigarettes are safer than combustible cigarettes. Because they heat a liquid to generate a nicotine-containing(युक्त ) aerosol, instead( बजाय/ of burning(जलाना/दहन) tobacco, they do not produce(उत्पादित करें) toxic tars(जहरीले निशान). That doesn’t mean they are completely safe. At high temperatures, e-cigarettes produce carcinogens such as formaldehyde(नि:संक्रामक),although these are fewer in number compared to regular cigarettes. They also increase the odds of lung(फेफड़ों)disease(बीमारी/रोग and myocardial infarction(रोधगलन), but to a lesser(लघु/न्यूनतर ) extent(विस्तार) than normal cigarettes do.

In the American Annual Review of Public Health, in January 2018 a group of researchers argued(तर्क करना/उलझ जाना) that e-cigarettes must be viewed from a “harm minimisation(नुकसान कम करने)” perspective(परिप्रेक्ष्य/संभावना). Given that combustible cigarettes are more noxious(हानिकारक) than electronic ones, switching from the former to the latter can only help addicts(नशेड़ी/आदी होना), they argued. Writing in the same journal issue, however, another group of researchers advocated the precautionary(निवारक/सावधानतापूर्ण) principle. Given that e-cigarettes are a young technology, they said, it will take time to uncover their ill-effects(बुरा प्रभाव). Already we know some carcinogens in e-cigarettes have a non-linear effect on cancer. This means even the low doses in e-cigarette aerosols can be carcinogenic if inhaled(साँस लेना) for years. Recent surveys also show that e-cigarettes can act as a gateway drug for young people. A 2011 study of Korean adolescents found that e-cigarette users were more likely to turn into regular smokers(धूम्रपान करने वालों के) eventually(फलतः/अंत में।). Plus, 2004-2014 data from the U.S. National Youth Tobacco Surveys suggest that young people at low risk of taking up smoking are turning to e-cigarettes. Against this background, India must tread carefully. Completely banning the technology, while selling normal cigarettes, could take away a promising smoking-cessation( बंद) aid. A more pragmatic(धृष्ट/ हस्‍तक्षेप करने वाला)option would be to regulate e-cigarettes tightly, by creating standards for the aerosols and banning underage and public use. This would leave smokers with a therapeutic(उपचारात्मक) alternative(विकल्प,), while protecting youngsters from a gateway drug. Either way, conflicting(विवादित/असंगत) evidence makes it a tough call for policymakers.



Important Vocabulary

Synonyms: barricade, closure, encirclement, restriction, roadblock
Antonyms: beginning, opening, start, advantage, aid

Synonyms: alert, careful, discreet

Synonyms: angle, aspect, attitude, context, mindset

4.Pragmatic(धृष्ट/ हस्‍तक्षेप करने वाला)
Synonyms: businesslike, down-to-earth, efficient, hardheaded, logical
Antonyms: excited, impractical, inefficient, irrational, unrealistic

Synonyms: beneficial, curative, remedial, salutary, analeptic
Antonyms: harmful, hurting, injurious, damaging, hurtful

Synonyms: adverse, antagonistic, clashing, contrary, incompatible
Antonyms: consonant, harmonious, agreeable, nonconflicting, peaceful

7.Addicts(नशेड़ी/आदी होना),
Synonyms: buff, devotee, enthusiast, fanatic, follower
Antonyms: detractor

Synonyms: fiery, flaming, gleaming, glowing, hot
Antonyms: cold, cool, dull, apathetic, unexcited

9.Evolving(विकसित /उद्विकासी)
Synonyms:derive, emerge, expand, get, grow
Antonyms: leave, lessen, stop, decrease, diminish

Synonyms:action, case, dispute, lawsuit, process




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