Bengaluru: The joint director, Directorate of Health and Family Welfare department, has issued notice to the makers of the Telugu film iSmart Shankar over alleged violation of Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (COTPA) Act.
According to the communication, the department states that it has come to its notice that on July 24 the posters of the movie iSmart Shankar has images of smoking displayed at Inox cinemas at Mantri Mall.
It further stated that it is violates the Section 5 of the COTPA Act and is a punishable offence. Further, it has sought clarification from the filmmakers for the alleged violation of the tobacco law.
Directed by Puri Jagannadh, iSmart Shankar features Ram Pothineni, Nabha Natesh and Nidhhi Agerwal in the lead, and is produced by Charmee along with Puri Jagannadh.
While issuing the notice, the department stated that as per the report of the World Health Organisation’s global adult tobacco survey for the year 2016-17, the young adults in the state of Karnataka are using to tobacco and tobacco related products by the age of 19.
It goes onto to add that currently there over 1.5 crore citizens in the state who are using some or other forms of tobacco products. “Every year at least one lakh people are dying due to tobacco related diseases in the country,” it stated.
Following such rules enforced to discourage the use of tobacco and its products through various mediums, including feature films, a Kannada film producer said that it is the duty of the filmmakers to adhere to the COTPA Act.
“There are strict standards when it comes to scenes of smoking and drinking alcohol in feature films at present. Statutory warnings are a must when such sequences are shown in the movies. Apart from entertainment, filmmakers have a duty to make sure that no wrong messages are sent under the garb of entertainment, as it influences a large section of the audience,” he added.