Rajasthan is considering of imposing a ban on the sale of the soft drinks stating that it affects the health of the children badly. With hot days round the corner, there is every possibility of children opting for the chilled drinks.
"The consumption of soft drinks has bad affects on the health of schoolchildren, specially those in primary sections. So we are planning to ban the sale of these aerated drinks in government-run schools," Ghanshyam Tiwari, Rajasthan's education minister, told IANS.
The decision would be taken after proper consultation with various sections of people, he added. He said before imposing the ban the government would delve into the harmful effects of cold drinks.
Most educationists and parents in the state have welcomed the idea.
"The government should immediately impose the ban as it would not only benefit students but also show a long term impact by resulting in a healthy society. Earlier also there has been much noise over the purity of these soft drinks, so it better to not to take a risk," said Ashok Kapil, an educationist.
Not all students are as excited though.
"Why should the government intervene? It is my choice what to drink, what to eat, where does the government come into the picture?" Surbhi Mathur, a student, fumed.
Class 9 student Divyansh Sharma was more in tune with the older generation.
"It's good to impose a ban on cold drinks as it would not only ward off health hazards but also restrict extravagance among students," said Divyansh.
He suggested that cold drinks could be replaced by hot-spiced milk, chhach, lassi and the like.
In 2003, soft drink majors like Pepsi and Coke were accused of selling products with pesticide residues by an environmental NGO.