Ban on smoking in Goa
only after tourist season
15 Nov 2008. PANAJI: Smokers
in Goa can puff away till the end of the year - despite the law against
smoking in public places in the rest of the country as the
state's peak tourism
season lies right ahead.
The state says it wants
to create more awareness about the ban, which came into effect Oct 2, before
Shekhar Salkar, who is
part of the state-run Tobacco Control Cell on Saturday said the state government
would start penalising people from Jan 1 for smoking in public places.
Salkar was speaking to
reporters at the end of an orientation session for police personnel vis-a-vis
the new anti-smoking rule aimed at wiping out the perils of passive smoking.
Those caught violating
the rule can be fined Rs.200.
"We don't want them to
fine people right now, we need to educate them too initially," Superintendent
of Police (North) Bosco George said.
||"We have devised a reward
and appraisal system where the policeman who creates maximum awareness
about the anti-smoking act will stand to benefit."
Goa, which has a population
of approximately 1.3 million, attracts nearly twice as many tourists each
season. The tourist season starts in late October, peaks in December and
tapers off by February.
The current tourism season
seems to be slack thanks to the global economic slowdown, with a sharp
decrease in the number of chartered planes flying down to Goa from Russia,
Britain and Germany.