Ten News World No tobacco Day Special: With Tobacco killing 2700 people everyday in India, Delhi auto drivers takes oath to eradicate tobacco 

Kashif Hasnain (Photo/Video) By Lokesh Goswami Ten News Delhi :

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New Delhi: Despite holding several social awareness campaigns against tobacco, government efforts to curb deaths being caused by tobacco hasnt yielded much results. On an average 2,739 people have been dying every day due to the use of tobacco and tobacco related disease are increasing in the country.

These are the facts revealed by the Sambandh Health Foundation, which works to create awareness over the issue, after compiling government data.

Tobacco use is classified as ‘disease’ under International classification of diseases (ICD-10). This is because the quit rates are very low – only about 3% in India.  With such a low probability of quitting and such a high probability of tobacco use leading to a multitude of diseases, the prevalence of tobacco has been rightly termed as the Tobacco Epidemic.

Among all such situations effort to curb tobacco related cases are on. Today 100 New Delhi’s auto-rickshaw drivers raised a hope of change. They have taken pledge not to use tobacco and also to eradicate it.

Moreover, the auto-rickshaw drivers also pasted anti-tobacco pamphlets in their auto and commenced auto rally. Union Minister of State for Health & Family welfare, Anupriya Patel flagged off the rally from near Udyog Bhawan metro station.

While talking to Ten News one of the drivers said, “We have taken lessons from our deeds and today we are pledging not only to avoid tobacco but also ask passengers to ignore it. It may cause fatal disease like cancer.”

Addressing media after flagging off rally, Union Minister Anupriya Patel said, “Government has been taking slew of efforts to curb tobacco related deaths and several awareness campaign is underway but until people get sensitive nothing can be changed.”

“The initiative of auto-rickshaw drivers and NGO Manas Foundation is remarkable it will bring change in the society and create awareness over the issue,” she added.

The theme of this world no tobacco day is ‘Tobacco and Heart Disease’. As per Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS-2) 2016-17, in India, 42.4% of men, 14.2% of women and 28.6% of all adults currently either smoke and or use smokeless tobacco. As per data, 19% of men, 2% of women and 10.7% of all adult currently smoke tobacco, while 29.6% of men, 12.8% of women and 21.4% of all adults currently use smokeless tobacco.

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