New Delhi: The Union Health ministry’s proposal to classify ENDS devices including e-cigarettes as “drugs” in order to ban their manufacture, sale, distribution and import, has been sent to the Attorney General for his opinion, officials said Thursday.Banning such alternative smoking devices like e-cigarettes, heat-not-burn devices, vape and e-nicotine flavoured hookah among others, is one of the priorities of the Health ministry in the first 100 days agenda of the second term of the Modi government, an official source said. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!”The proposal which has been approved by the Drug Technical Advisory Board (DTAB), the government’s top advisory body on technical matters related to medicines in the country is now awaiting opinion from the Attorney General,” the source said. The Union Health Ministry’s proposal pertains to classifying ENDS devices including e-cigarettes as “drugs” under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act. A high-decibal debate is on globally over the harm-reduction aspects of ENDS with some organisations claiming that these devices help in smoking cessation and are less harmful alternatives to traditional cigarettes, while the government is seeking to ban them contending that they pose health risks to users, similar to those of conventional cigarettes. ENDS are devices that heat a solution to create an aerosol, which also frequently contains flavours, usually dissolved into propylene glycol and glycerin. The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), under the health ministry has proposed that manufacture, sale and distribution of ENDS, including e-cigarettes and similar products, should be prohibited under Section 26A of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940.