A packet of gutka contains about 3095 different chemicals, out of which 28 are identified as carcinogens and cause cancer to throat, food pipe, pancreas, stomach, lungs and kidneys. Tobacco chewing is also the main reason for oral cancer, as it contains heavy metals like arsenic, cadmium, copper and even lead.
Maintaining that along with gutka, all other tobacco products should be banned, Dr Ray said that government alone can't help in educating the people. “Various non-governmental organisations can also help in tackling this menace,” Dr Ray suggested.
Besides the health hazards, gutka also affects the cleanliness of the surrounding as people spit the chewed tobacco on the walls of schools, pavements and office buildings, etc. Zuhaib Ahmad, an entrepreneur said: “The ban on gutka is the need of the hour. If nothing, at least it will help to keep the offices premises, bus stands and other public places clean, which are otherwise littered with red-stains.”
The heads of twelve regional cancer centers in the country have also urged the Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh to ban the smokeless tobacco products like gutka and pan masala, reported IBN LIVE.
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