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Business News/ News / India/  World-No Tobacco day: Health Ministry to start 60-day 'Tobacco Free Youth Campaign' today

On the occasion of 'World No Tobacco Day', Union Health Ministry will launch 60-day pan India campaign on the theme ‘tobacco-free youth’ on Wednesday. The campaign will focus on taking steps to prevent initiation of tobacco use among among youngsters and assisting users to quit.

As per the data, tobacco continue to be of grave concern due to its rising consumption among adolescents and adults in India. According to the Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS), tobacco use among young adolescents (13-15 years) in 2019 was 8.5 per cent and was 14.6 per cent in 2010. There was a decline of 42 per cent.

Other than ‘tobacco-free youth’ campaign, several initiatives like ‘tobacco-free educational institution’ are also a part off the campaign set for launch on ‘Anti-Tobacco Day’ on May 31.

All the states and union territories should conduct special drives for enforcement off the provisions of the Cigarretes and other Tobacco products, Joint Secretary of the Health Ministry V Hekali Zhimomi urged states and union territories in an official letter. 

The official letter also noted provisions related to the prhibiton on ban on smoking in public places, prohibition on sale within 100 yards of an educational institution and sale to and by persons aged less than 18 years (section 6) and ban on the sale of tobacco products without statutory pictorial warnings (section 7).

Curse of tobacco on the world

According to the Global Burden of Disease Study, there were over 1.2 million deaths due to smoking and secondhand smoke (SHS) in India in 2019, and more recently WHO has estimated that 1.35 million deaths occurred every year because of tobacco use in India.

Despite nationwide initiatives and policies implemented by the Indian government to control tobacco consumption, the addictive element continues to pose major threat to India's healthcare system. 

Between 2016-17, overall tobacco use was 28.6%, which is a 17.3 per cent relative reduction from 34.6 per cent reported in 2009-10, stated the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS)

‘No Tobacco Pledge’

To encourage people to leave tobacco consumption, the Health Ministry is also enabling a provision for citizzens to take a “No Tobacco Pledge" directly on the MyGov platform of the government of India. People can take this pledge during the campaign from May 31 to June 21.

"It may be noted that the ministry is planning to undertake the' Tobacco Free Youth Campaign' which is proposed to be launched pan India on  May 31. In this regard, we request all the states and UTs to take necessary action/pre-planning for debriefing the district nodal officers and concerned stakeholders," the joint secretary said in the letter to the states and UTs.

Under the nationwide tobacco programme, activities include evidence-based mass media campaigns, warnings against the harmful effects of tobacco consumption, motivational activities to quit the element, etc will be held.

(With inputs from PTI)

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Updated: 31 May 2023, 07:42 AM IST
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