Nagpur: In a biggest ever action against tobacco companies, the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA), Nagpur Unit, has seized a huge stock of cigarette brands worth a whopping Rs 26.71 crore of two reputed companies for violating norms of the new government notification making it mandatory to carry larger pictorial warnings covering 85 per cent of the display area on cigarette packets with words “Statutory Warning: Smoking Kills. Tobacco Causes Throat & Mouth Cancer” under Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Packaging and Labelling) Rules 2008.
The FDA seized stock of cigarette packs mainly of Bristol, Wills, Gold Flakeand other brands of ITC Ltd form its godown situated at Logistic Park, Mauza Nimji, Tehsil Kalmeshwar, District Nagpur.
The stock seized is valuaed at Rs 22,85,57,658 (Rs 22.85 crore). Similarly, the FDA seized the stock ofcigarette packs of 22 brands mainly of Malbrow, Four Square M/s Godfrey Philips India Ltd from its godown in Wadi run by company’s agent M/s Rainbow Enterprises. This stock is valued at Rs 3,85,49,281 (Rs 3.85 crore). The collective value of seized stocks of cigarette packs is Rs 26,71,07,939 (Rs 26.71 crore).
The FDA initiated the biggest ever seizer action under , under the Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply & Distribution) Act 2003.
The seizures were made under the supervision of Shivaji Desai, Assistant Commissioner (Food) by Assistant Commissioner (Food) N R Wakode, Food safety Officers Kiran Gedam, Abhay Deshpande, lalit Soyam, Anand Mahajan, Akhilesh Raut, Pravin Umap, Amitkumar Uplap under the directives of Joint Commissioner (Vigilance) Harish Baijal, Mumbai.