Raising awareness about tobacco hazards and cessation needed in slums

Raising awareness about tobacco hazards and cessation needed in slums

[To read this posting in Hindi language, please click here]

An awareness programme on tobacco hazards and on-site tobacco cessation counseling and help was provided under the leadership of Tobacco Cessation Clinic of CSMMU and other social organizations in slums of Lucknow.

"If I was aware about the tobacco health hazards, I could have saved my life and not crippled myself with a disabling lung disease" said a 40 years old Ram Kumar who is a resident of these slums in Tehri Pulia. Ram Kumar lives with his 10 years old polio-affected son Sunil.

Tobacco is the leading preventable cause of death in the world. It causes 1 in 10 deaths among adults worldwide. In 2005, tobacco caused 5.4 million deaths, or an average of one death every 6 seconds. At the current rate, the death toll is projected to reach more than 8 million annually by 2030 and a total of up to one billion deaths in the 21st century. Tobacco use is the forth most common risk factor for disease world wide.

"The economic costs of tobacco use are equally devastating. In addition to the high public health costs of treating diseases attributed to tobacco use, tobacco kills people at the height of their productivity, depriving families of breadwinners and nations of healthy workforce. Tobacco users are also less productive while they are alive due to increased sickness" said Ritesh Arya who volunteers with Indian Society Against Smoking, a unit of Abhinav Bharat Foundation.

Ritesh was consuming tobacco for about 10 years before he quit. He recommends that a strong will power and conviction to chose health and life over tobacco-related diseases and deaths is the key to successful tobacco cessation.

"Tobacco is a silent killer and there is an urgent need to eradicate this from its root"
Rahul Dwivedi, spokesperson of Abhinav Bharat Foundation said.

Many other youth from different schools and colleges including Lucknow University, Christian Degree College and Kanpur University were also actively engaged in the campaign.

[To read this posting in Hindi language, please click here]

Jointly organized by:

Tobacco Cessation Clinic, CSMMU; Indian Society Against Smoking (ISAS), Abhinav Bharat Foundation; Samadhan; Asha Parivar; Asha Samajik Vidyalaya; Citizen News Service (CNS)