JAMMU, JUN 2: Minister for Health & Medical Education, Bali Bhagat has called for a State-wide sustained campaign against usage of Tobacco and allied products with active involvement of various stakeholders including, social, religious organizations, educational institutions and allied bodies, which will have a great influence on public. “Numerous precious lives are lost every year due to various diseases caused by using different forms of tobacco and allied products, and the need of the hour is to take a serious call for discouraging this practice,” said the Minister.
Speaking during a function, which was jointly organized by Jammu Centre of Indian Dental Association (IDA), Jammu Chapter of Art of Living and Indira Gandhi Government Dental College (IGGDC) here today, in connection with observance of ‘World No Tobacco Day’, the Minister said that drug addiction, including usage of Cigarette and allied tobacco-products are causing great harm to the society, especially younger generation, and collective efforts are needed to curb this practice for ensuring an healthy environment and saving youth from diverting to negative direction. He further said that only Government efforts are not sufficient to keep a check on social evils, but entire society has to contribute for the social cause.
Elaborating that more than 27% population of Jammu and Kashmir are consumers of tobacco in different forms. He called upon the Directorate of Health Services and credible NGOs to chalk-out a well-knit strategy to educate masses through awareness programmes across the State about ill-effects of tobacco on human health.
Lauding efforts of Indian Dental Association and other social organizations for their valuable initiative to organize a mega awareness campaign during ‘World No Tobacco Week’, the Minister asked them to continue their efforts to discourage usage of tobacco.
On the occasion, the Minister distributed prizes among students, who excelled in different activities through their writings, skits, and lectures highlighting ill-effects of tobacco on human health during the weeklong campaign. He also felicitated doctors and other participants of the campaign for their dedicated efforts towards the social cause.
President IDA, Dr Ritesh Gupta gave detailed account of the activities, which were carried out during the weeklong awareness campaign.
Prominent among others present on the occasion included, Principal IGGDC, Dr Romesh Singh; Principal GMC, Dr Sunanda Raina; Director School Education Jammu, Ravinder Singh and ADC Jammu, Anuradha Gupta.