Middle Eastern countries, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, have categorized ‘naswar’ as a drug and imposed a complete ban on its consumption.
Naswar is a tobacco dip that is consumed predominantly in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Central Asian countries. It consists of powdered tobacco, slaked lime, and indigo. It is used by putting a pinch of it under the tongue or in the cheek.
Following the development, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), on the direction of the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF), has barred outbound passengers from carrying naswar packets with them to the Middle East.
The ANF has also put up large banners on all international airports in the country to raise awareness about the recently enacted ban in the Middle East among passengers traveling there.
In an official statement, the CAA has strongly advised citizens not to carry naswar with them during their travel to the Middle East. The newly enacted laws in the region have criminalized its possession and those caught in possession of naswar will be subjected to severe punishment.
Earlier, the CAA had imposed a ban on the consumption of gutka, a chewing tobacco preparation made of crushed areca nut, and naswar within the premises of all airports in the country.