Voyage of Discovery

The Court consolidated two cases on tobacco advertising. In the first case, the petitioner sued the government of Bangladesh for failure to adequately enforce a statutory warning to disclose tobacco's effects on health. The second case involved the use of a touring luxury yacht by British American Tobacco (BAT) to advertise its cigarettes.  Invoking the right to life and liberty guaranteed by the Constitution of Bangladesh, the petitioner urged the court to declare advertisement of tobacco products illegal.  In its opinion, the Court recognized the harms of smoking and agreed with petitioners that the BAT yacht constituted an “advertisement” and that, more broadly, the use of any advertisement for cigarettes without appropriate health warnings offended the constitutional right to life.  The Court, among other actions, directed the government to take steps to restrict tobacco production and smoking in public and prohibited certain advertising and promotion of tobacco products.