(CNN)India on Wednesday announced a complete ban on the sale of all e-cigarettes, saying the devices posed a health risk, especially to young people.
"Unfortunately, e-cigarettes got promoted initially as a way in which people can get out of the habit of smoking cigarettes. It was to be a weaning process from using cigarettes," Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said Wednesday after a Cabinet meeting.
"The Cabinet rightly thought it is time and we immediately took a decision so that the health of our citizens, of our young, is not thrown to a risk," she added.
Sitharaman said the deaths of seven people in the US following vaping-related sicknesses had added to local concerns about the impact of e-cigarettes on people's health. Hundreds of people are being treated for lung illness in 36 US states and researchers are investigating if those illnesses are related to the use of e-cigarettes.
She said that an emergency ordinance banning the use of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) will be issued in the coming days. The ordinance will be taken up during the next session of Parliament and converted into law.
Sitharaman added that the ban would cover e-cigarette production, manufacturing, import, export, transport, sale, distribution, storage and advertisement. It includes all forms of ENDS, heat-not-burn products and e-hookah devices, accordin