President Ram Nath Kovind Current Affairs
Punjab becomes third state in the country after Maharashtra and Gujarat to ban hookah bars or lounges. The ban was announced through law after President Ram Nath Kovind gave assent to Cigarettes and other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) (Punjab Amendment) Bill, 2018. The objective of this law is to check use of tobacco in various forms and prevent diseases caused by use of the tobacco products.
The Bill was Punjab state assembly in March this year with an aim to bring the law in force to check the use of tobacco in various forms and prevent diseases caused by the use of tobacco. The law was enacted due check unregulated growth these hookah parlours and rapid increase in trend of ‘hookah-sheesha’ smoking in the state. Moreover, there were complaints of drug consumption in these hookah bars across the state.
Impact on Health
Smoking of hookah increases health risks, which includes exposure to toxic chemicals that are not filtered out by water. It also results in transmission or risk of infectious disease like tuberculosis (TB) from sharing a hookah. As per study, an hour’s average of hookah includes 20-200 puffs, delivering 50 litres of smoke contain, hazardous and carcinogenic chemicals.
The 13th Convention of Central Information Commission was held in New Delhi. It was inaugurated by President Ram Nath Kovind. It was attended by Chief Information Commissioner, Information Commissioners, State Information Commissioners, former information Commissioners, Central Public information officer, NGOs and other stake holders.
Central Information Commission (CIC)
CIC was established in 2005 by Central Government under provisions of Right to Information (RTI) Act (2005). It is plays important role in maintaining transparency in system of governance essential for healthy democracy. Such kind of transparency check aims to curb corruption, nepotism, oppression and misuse or abuse of the authority.
CIS is designated statutory authority to receive and inquire into complaint from any person. The general superintendence, direction and management of affairs of Commission are vested in Chief Information Commissioner who is assisted by Information Commissioners. CIC submits annual report to Union government on the implementation of the provisions of RTI Act. The central government inturn places this report before each house of Parliament.
Functions and Powers of CIC
- It can order inquiry into any matter if there are reasonable grounds.
- It can secure compliance of its decisions from the public authority.
- It can recommend steps to be taken for promoting such conformity, if public authority does not conform to provisions of RTI Act.
- It receives and inquire into a complaint from
- It examines any record which is under control of the public authority and which may be withheld from it on any grounds during the enquiry. While inquiring, it has powers of civil court