Tobacco: Bhutan Narcotics Control Agency found that many restaurants, bars and hotels in Samdrupjongkhar that do not have designated smoking room. A total of Nu 26,000 fines were collected.

One of the bars was fine Nu 10,000 for allowing a customer to smoke inside the bar, and two individuals for smoking in the no smoking zone.

Among others, a total of 1,134 packets of baba, cigarette sticks were seized.

Individuals were fined Nu 500 each for carrying tobacco products. Many were found within permissible goods.

Deputy chief programme officer, Dorji Tshering, said many restaurants, bars or hotels, including karaoke don’t have separate smoking zone. All they have is a “no smoking” on the walls.

“Although it’s not compulsory, owner should make sure that no customer smokes in the open and it’s their responsibility to inform them,” he said. “If the customer don’t listen, they have the right to call law enforcement agencies.”

Dorji Tshering said that people knew about the inspection which is why number of defaulters was less.

Yangchen C Rinzin,  Samdrupjongkhar