People caught spitting paan in the street could face a fine of £100, after Brent Council launched a campaign against the practice.

Paan is a combination of leaf and nut, which is chewed, often with tobacco, to produce stimulant effects.

It is popular in Asian communities and is widely available across Brent.

But the council has urged users not to spit out the mixture onto roads and pavements as it is both unpleasant and can leave a distinctive red stain.

Cllr Krupa Sheth, responsible for the environment at Brent Council, said the move highlights that such action will not be tolerated in the borough.

“Brent Council sending out a strong message – do not spit paan in our streets,” she wrote on social media.

She joined representatives from Veolia and the Wembley Central and Alperton Residents’ Association to launch the campaign against paan spitting.

This included painting over stencils to leave a yellow sign which warned offenders that they could be fined £100 if caught.

It is supported by the Metropolitan Police, which likens the practice to littering.