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Dravid bats for anti-tobacco campaign

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New Delhi | Thursday, Mar 5 2015 IST
 
An anti-tobacco campaign featuring former top cricketer Rahul Dravid, Indias ambassador for tobacco control, was launched with a lot of fanfare here. The campaign comprising public service advertisements and poster on tobacco control was unveiled by Health Secretary B P Sharma at a function here today. Thanking Dravid for his endorsement of the cause, the Secretary hoped the association of Dravid with the cause will inspire the youth of the country to stay away from tobacco products. ''The growing number of youth and women consuming tobacco in different form is a cause of grave concern, and the anti-tobacco campaigns need to target them,'' he said on the occasion. It is estimated that nearly 800,000-900,000 people die every year due to diseases related to tobacco use in India. About 50 per cent of all cancers in men and 25 per cent of all cancers in women can be attributed to tobacco use. It is estimated that about 90 per cent of all the oral cancers are caused due to smokeless tobacco use. The anti-tobacco campaign featuring Dravid, nicknamed 'theWall', is an effort by the ministry to reach out to millions of young and potential tobacco users to encourage them to refrain from the deadly habit of tobacco use. The campaign has been prepared by the Health and Family Welfare Ministry and the World Health Organisation Country Office for India (WHO), in collaboration with the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) and HRIDAY. The audio and visual advertisements, in Hindi and English, along with the posters will be used to create awareness regarding the harmful effects of tobacco use through TV, radio, at schools, community spaces, railway compartments, and social media. The Global Adult Tobacco Survey India (GATS) conducted by the ministry shows that 35 per cent of the adults in the age group of 15 years and above consume tobacco in some form or the other, with 48 per cent men and 20 per cent women consuming tobacco in some form. Smokeless tobacco is the most-prevalent form of tobacco use in India within the lower socio-economic groups and women. GATS found that more than 20 crore Indians use smokeless tobacco. UNI SD AY SHS1713

-- (UNI) -- C-1-1-DL0059-31653.Xml

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