A total of 10,357 people were caught lighting up in non-smoking public places in the capital last year, the Seoul Metropolitan Government said Sunday.
Seocho saw by far the most offenders with 9,079 cases, accounting for a whopping 87 percent of the total, followed by 404 in Yongsan, 233 in Gangnam, 231 in Songpa, and 141 in Gwanak.
The non-smoking policy has met with a mixed response. One non-smoker complained that she still sees people smoking at bus stops, which are non-smoking zones, and called for a stronger crackdown.
But a smoker said it makes no sense for the government to ban smoking in parts of the city but at the same time collect taxes on cigarettes. "To protect the rights of smokers, there should be more smoking booths and more information about non-smoking areas," he added.