13,000 people on streets against Tobacco

By Rikparna Sinha Roy

Photo: Sankha Das

Tobacco is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. In the year 2008, the World Health Organization has declared tobacco as the world’s single greatest preventable cause of death. More than 13,000 people mainly the youths in 16 different locations of Bengal march to create awareness against tobacco use.

The event was organised by NGO Sahay Children International, where the youth volunteers, theirparents, community members, social workers, school students, teachers, MLAs, municipality chairpersons, health officers, police and other NGOs participated in the rally, which is decorated with Tableau, folk song and dance, posters, display models, traditional & tribal dance march to make people aware.

Tobacco use in children and adolescents is rampant around the globe. India ranks the 2ndhighest in tobacco consumption, with an average of 70.7% men using tobacco in some form or the other. The youth participants of NGO Sahay Children International organized a sample survey in 2017 where they found that about 45% people in their community are using both smoke and smokeless form of tobacco.

Moreover, it was noticed that 37% boys and 4% girls in the community age of 12 to 24 years are in habit in using tobacco in rural and urban areas of Sahay sponsorship program. The youth of the program addressed this issue by organizing workshops for youth and community, and created No Tobacco zones.

As the rally aimed to sensitize about the ill effects of tobacco and promote healthy living for all, hope the generation has taken it in a serious note.