Ban or no ban, Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee will not give up smoking. “I’ll not quit smoking,” he declared. He was responding to a query from a reporter at the Writers’ Buildings on Tuesday.
Smoking has been prohibited in the protected area inside the Writers’ Buildings with immediate effect, and boards have been put up at several places warning that anyone found smoking or spitting would be prosecuted and fined.
Reminded that his office fell within the prohibited area, Bhattacharjee, a chain-smoker, appeared defiant and non-chalant to the order.
While the environment department has issued the order in cooperation with the PWD, police have been asked to ensure compliance with the restrictions. But the police department is headed by Bhattacharjee, who also as the Home Minister has a responsibility in enforcing the order.
However, Bhattacharjee’s reiteration of his intention could not be construed as violation. For, he did not specify that he would continue smoking in the prohibited area as he had been doing till the order was clamped.