No smoking at IFFI venue, film stars told

Panaji, Nov 30 ( The National Organisation for Tobacco Eradication (NOTE) has taken objection to film stars smoking at the ongoing 40th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) venue here.

“Rajat Kapoor, Radhika Apte and other delegates were seen smoking within the INOX courtyard. This appeared in local newspapers. It is a violation of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) 2003 which is operative in Goa since Oct 2, 2008,” Shekhar Salkar, the NOTE general secretary, said in a written complaint sent to the organisers.

The complaint was addressed to Manoj Srivastava, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Entertainment Society of Goa (ESG), the co-host for IFFI along with the Directorate of Film Festivals.

While Rajat is here to promote his English film “And Once Again” directed by Amol Palekar, Radhika stars along with Rahul Bose in Bengali film “Antaheen”, a film screened at the festival’s Indian Panorama section.

NOTE has said that it was the organisers’ legal and moral responsibility to ensure that “film stars and VIPs not be seen smoking as the younger generation would imitate the actions of these heroes and become addicted to smoking which will damage their health”.

It has further asked ESG to shore up action against smoking at the IFFI venues and ensuring that the public places remain smoke free.

“It is your responsibility to see that no more violations of COTPA Act 2003 take place and the whole premises of INOX remain completely smoke free since it is a public place,” it said.