The tobacco consumption in India has seen a significant dip of six percent in the year 2016-17, as compared to the year 2009-10. The adult tobacco survey, which was conducted by Union Health Ministry shows that tobacco prevalence has gone down from 34.6 per cent to 28.6 per cent.
As per the Health Ministry, total number of tobacco users has reduced by 81 lakhs.
The National Health Policy, 2017, of the government of India has set a target of relative reduction on prevalence of current tobacco use by 15 per cent by 2020, and 30 per cent by 2025.
As per Health Ministry findings, global adult tobacco survey GATS-2, shows a relative reduction of 17 per cent prevalence of current tobacco use since GATS-1 in 2009-10.
Addressing World Health Organization’s, FCTC for Achievement of Sustainable Development Goal, Union Health Minister JP Nadda said, “Tobacco is one of the prime drivers of poverty in the country.” The union minister further said, “I urged all tobacco users to give it up.”
He further added, “Our efforts for tobacco control will be aggressive for a tobacco free society.”
The global adult tobacco survey has brought a sigh of relief for the government as well. The prevalence of tobacco use among the youths aged 15-24 has gone down from 18.4 per cent in 2009-10 to 12.4 per cent in 2016-17, which is 33 per cent relative reduction.
The fact sheet provided by the Health Ministry suggests that, the prevalence of tobacco use among minors age 15-17 and adolescents age 18-24 has a relative reduction of 54 per cent and 28 per cent respectively.
Meanwhile speaking with My Medical Mantra, Dr Pankaj Chaturvedi, who is known as a crusader against tobacco said, “This is truly heartening that consumption of tobacco has gone down significantly. We all have worked very hard to see this day. I must thank the entire media for their very proactive role in anti tobacco campaign.”
Dr P C Gupta, director, Healis–Sekhsaria Institute for Public Health said, “This was as first litmus test which shows that the anti tobacco policies which we health activist were adcocating is moving in the right direction. As per the GATS 2016 survey there is a reasonable drop in tobacco consumption. we now need to accelarate the anti tobacco activities with mush vigour. We also need to help tobacco users quit the habit by introducing tobacco cessation programme.”
Meanwhile the government had already increased the pictorial warnings on the tobacco products to 85 per cent on both the sides of the packet from 40 per cent.
As per World Health Organization’s (WHO) fact sheet, over 7 million people die each year. More than 6 million deaths are result of direct tobacco use.
- Age 15-24 tobacco consumption reduced by 6% from 18.4% to 12.4%
- Age 25-44 tobacco consumption reduced by 7.2% from 37.3% to 30.1%
- Age 45-64 tobacco consumption reduced by 7.2% from 47.1% to 39.9%
- 19% of men currently use tobacco products
- 8% of women are tobacco users
- 4% adults either smoke or use smokeless tobacco