Assam witness rise in smokeless tobacco users

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We celebrate or observe World No Tobacco Day every year on May 31 but how effective it is. The consumption of tobacco is increasing day by day and according to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) 48.2% of all adults uses all types of tobacco in 2016-17 which was 39.3% in 2009-10.

Whereas, the national statistics shows that 28.6% of all adults use all kinds of tobacco in the national level which means Assam records an increase of 19.6% in tobacco consumption.

According to GATS, 14.4% of the adults use smoking in 2010 while in 2016-17, 13.3% of the adults use smoking tobacco. But the use of smokeless tobacco is still prevailing in the society and 41.7% of the adults use smokeless tobacco which was 32.7% in 2009-10.

According to the survey of GATS, 50.5% of men and 32.5% of women and 41.7% of all adults are using smokeless tobacco in Assam which is a matter of serious concern. The use of smokeless tobacco is mostly prevailing in Assam which is a threat to the society. 26.1% of smokers were advised by a health care provider to quit smoking and 30.2% of smokeless tobacco users are advised by health care provider to quit smokeless tobacco.

Meanwhile, the Gauhati High Court has also declared the Assam Health Prohibition Act 2013 as void in 2017 and unfortunately, this comes as a major blow to the Assam Government’s step to prevent rampant rise in cancer cases as the Act aims to prohibit manufacture, store and sale of smokeless tobacco in the state.

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