Press Esc to close

Enforce the ban

Jan 10, 2014: 22:21 IST
It is a matter of serious concern that smoking has increased the world over, and in India, in the last few decades, in spite of efforts to curb the unhealthy habit among people. An international study has found that the absolute number of smokers has increased in India from 1980 to 2012. It is poor consolation that the prevalence of smoking among men has come down proportionally, because the number of women smokers has increased from over 5 million to about 12 million now. The number of male smokers is about 100 million. While smoking has come down in developed countries, it has increased in all developing countries. The increase in smoking in these countries is mainly due to the increase in the young population. It is estimated that smoking-related ailments cause more than a million deaths in India. The pressure on public health expenditure is high because of this and is bound to increase further.

The figures show that anti-smoking policies and campaigns are not working effectively. There was a low awareness of the dangers of smoking and other uses of tobacco till some decades ago but medical research has found that they cause a number of serious diseases, including cancer. In most cases the habit starts because of peer pressure or as a style statement.

Since prevention is better than cure, anti-smoking programmes should concentrate more on preventing children and youngsters from picking up the habit than on weaning them away from it. This will call for more effective ways of conveying the message to young persons in schools and colleges. Though there is a ban on smoking in public places, it is neither honoured nor enforced. Passive smoking poses a health hazard for non-smokers too. Regulations on tobacco advertisements are also not implemented. In fact there is no effective law to control surrogate advertisements on the use of tobacco. Though guidelines on smoking scenes in films and television were laid down over an year ago, it has been found that such scenes have increased since then.

It has been found that increasing the tax on tobacco products will have an impact on their use. This has been demonstrated in Rajasthan. The tax on them, at zero per cent for bidis and 17 per cent on cigarettes, is much lower in Karnataka than in most other states. Governments, social organisations and educational institutions must make more serious efforts address the problem of tobacco use.

Go to Top

More from this section
Most trending stories
Photo Gallery
Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the media on the first day of the winter session...

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the media on the first day of the winter session...

Outgoing Congress president Sonia Gandhi, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Congress...

Outgoing Congress president Sonia Gandhi, former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Congress...

INLD MP Dushyant Chautala arrives by a tractor to attend the winter session of Parliament...

INLD MP Dushyant Chautala arrives by a tractor to attend the winter session of Parliament...

Social activist Anna Hazare while addressing a press conference at the Guwahati Press club, in...

Social activist Anna Hazare while addressing a press conference at the Guwahati Press club, in...

Members of Anganwadi workers hold a protest against Uttar Pradesh Government in support of their...

Members of Anganwadi workers hold a protest against Uttar Pradesh Government in support of their...

Election observers inspecting the EVM (Electronic Voting Machines) at a distribution centre...

Election observers inspecting the EVM (Electronic Voting Machines) at a distribution centre...

A vegetable vendor sits between the wheels of a parked truck, in a street market in Kolkata on...

A vegetable vendor sits between the wheels of a parked truck, in a street market in Kolkata on...

Army jawans near a helicopter parked at Kolkata maidan during foggy Friday morning. Historic Victori

Army jawans near a helicopter parked at Kolkata maidan during foggy Friday morning. Historic Victori

A fisherman casting his net at Dal Lake during a cold winter morning, in Srinagar on...

A fisherman casting his net at Dal Lake during a cold winter morning, in Srinagar on...

Muslims pray on the steps of a mosque during a demonstration against the...

Muslims pray on the steps of a mosque during a demonstration against the...

Like us on Facebook

Copyright 2017, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bengaluru - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523
Powered by Yodasoft Technologies Pvt. Ltd.