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Shisha pipes collected from 60 Kabul hotels

Shisha pipes collected from 60 Kabul hotels

Nov 30, 2016 - 19:19

KABUL (Pajhwok): Police and health officials on Wednesday wrapped up a week long campaign confiscating hundreds of shisha water pipes and paraphernalia from hotels and restaurants in Kabul.

Hookahs were collected from around 60 hotels and restaurants in the central capital during the campaign, but the kalians were still existed in some hotels raided during the campaign.

The campaign was jointly launched by the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), the Environment Protection Authority (EPA), Kabul municipality and police on November 26.

Hostels and cafes were raided as part of the campaign in third, fourth, fifth, six, 10th and 13th police districts until Wednesday. The aim was to prevent tobacco use in public and crowded areas.

MoPH director for controlling tobacco products, Dr. Bashir Ahmad Sarwari,  ending the campaign, said more than 300 hookahs had been collected from around 60 hotels and restaurants.

Owners and workers of hotels promised they would no longer use kalians in future, he said.

However, the campaign faced harsh reaction from Kabul Golden Star Hotel owner, Abdul Asar, who did not allow confiscation of all hookahs from his hotel.

The campaign was also not implemented in Kabul Gozin and Kabul Star hotels located in the fourth and 10th police districts.

Dr. Bashir Ahmad Sarwari, in response to a question, acknowledged the campaign could not be implemented on all hotels due to the absence of a representative from the attorney general office.

Despite repeated requests, the attorney general office refused to send its representative to help the campaign, he said.

Mohammad Ismail Ahmadi, a manager of Sufra Afghan Restaurant in the fifth police district of Kabul, protested against the campaign and said that the government should prevent hookahs from being imported if it really wanted to ban them in hotels.

“After we were informed through the media that hookahs are illegal, we stopped using them in our restaurant,” he said.

Ahmadi added they would be satisfied if the law was equally enforced on all hotels and restaurants.