While almost all enclosed public spaces sport the “No Smoking” signs and posters on entrances and hallways, many complain that some smokers are ignoring the ban on smoking in these spaces.
Many residents feel that the law on banning smoking in public spaces seem to only be “theoretical”, because some smokers still walk into public places, with lit cigarettes in hand, completely ignoring the ban.
Residents mainly call is for authorities take stricter action on this behaviour, which many consider to be a form of social rebellion.
“Efforts by authorities involved in the formulation of smoking bans seem to go overlooked because we still are being aggravated by the clouds of smoke when walking into some public spaces, especially in toilets” says Ahmad Abdul Hamid a shopper in a well known mall in Doha.
Abdullah Al Ghanem said “almost all smokers are very much aware of the dangers attached to smoking, and second hand smoking yet they have a complete disregard to those of us who don’t smoke, and are nonchalantly “puffing” away in enclosed places, much to our distress”.
“I call for concerned authorities to enforce and implement the ban on smoking indoors, for the overall benefit and health of everyone” said Al Ghanem.
Mohammad Abdul Azizi, a smoker himself, said “I don’t smoke indoor, and I agree with the banning of smoking in enclosed public spaces, but I am aware of the agony smokers feel when having to walk outside for a cigarette, especially with the heat outside”.
“I’m sure that many smokers would agree that malls and shopping centers should designate indoor smoking rooms, given they are a situated away from the shops and stores” says Abdul Aziz.
Qatar has banned smoking in closed public places including governmental offices, ministries, schools, shopping complexes, medical facilities and factory and industrial establishment in November 2002.
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