New Delhi: The manufacturers of Pan Bahar have reiterated that the product does not contain any nicotine or tobacco, and that there has been no violation of the contract signed by Hollywood star Pierce Brosnan.
While the firm is yet to detail its strategy to deal with Brosnan’s demand to drop his images from their advertisement, it has said that the former James Bond star knew the product he was endorsing. The contract, which is at the heart of the dispute between the actor and the firm, has not been made public by the company so far.
Brosnan had come under social media fire for “promoting” products which may trigger cancer. In an exclusive statement to People magazine, Brosnan responded by saying that the company had made “unauthorised and deceptive use” of his image to endorse its entire range of products. “It was clearly mentioned to him that it was Pan Masala/mouth freshener,” said a source linked to the manufacturers of Pan Bahar.
Pan Bahar says its pan masala contains betel nut, lime, catechu, cardamom seeds, sandalwood oil, and kewara. These have their own adverse health effects. An August 2003 study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), which is part of the WHO, concluded that chewing betel quid (a combination of betel leaf, areca nut and slaked lime) without tobacco is known to cause oral cancer in humans. However, Pan Bahar packets do carry a statutory warning required as per law that says “chewing of pan masala is injurious to health”.