Directors of 14 regional cancer centres across the country, including the Indian Dental Association and Tata Memorial Centre (TMC), have written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Union Health Minister Ghulab Nabi Azad urging them to bring in a nationwide ban on the sale of gutka/pan masala products in the country.

The move comes after cancer specialists/oncologists, oral cancer victims and public health experts lauded the government for banning gutka in over 10 States under the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) regulations, which prohibit the addition of tobacco or nicotine in food, and urged the government to ensure effective implementation of this notification in all the States.