New Delhi: Start vapourising & Stop smoking Now is the New Mantra for Gen X. SMOKEFREE electronic cigarettes just Launched in India recently, the battery-powered device that looks like the real thing emits nicotine vapour instead of tobacco smoke. A light on the tip even glows like a real cigarette.
Even in these days of strict laws banning smoking in public places ,these gadgets let people puff away legally in cinemas, restaurants and airports. But there are worries about the health impact of esmoking. Manufacturers claim these don’t contain any of the 4,000 cancer-causing substances like tar and carbon monoxide found in regular fags and are, therefore ,a healthier smoking alternative which could help users kick the butt eventually.But these claims have ignited a debate ,with many in the medical fraternity saying there is not enough evidence to prove their safety and efficacy as nicotine-replacement therapy
Despite the controversy, the devices ,invented by a Chinese pharmacist, have found a niche following in India. Manufacturers say most buyers are in the 30-50 age group. Some just want to look stylish.
However, marketing executive Sanjiban Banerjee is convinced that they work. The Kolkata resident, who smoked up to 15 cigarettes a day for six years, has not touched any kind of cigarette for two weeks. I smoked the e-cigarettes a lot for the first week,but then cut down, he said. E-cigarettes are made of plastic and metal and heat a liquid nicotine solution in a disposable cartridge, creating vapour that the smoker inhales. The vapour disappears quickly so there’s no fear of passive smoking. The starter kit costs anywhere between Rs 350 and Rs 1,000.