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Tobacco Control Laws to Be Regulated in India

Delivering the keynote address at the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) 'Leadership Training Programme on Community based Cancer Control' in New Delhi today//, the Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare, Dr. Anbumani Ramadoss said that a dedicated National Programme for Tobacco Control will be instituted under the 11th Five Year Plan. Under this programme, a National Regulatory Authority (NRA) to monitor and regulate the effective implementation of tobacco control laws will be set up. The other vital components of the programme include a State/District level programme and setting up of tobacco testing laboratories for content regulation. A national level public awareness campaign highlighting the ill effects of tobacco use will also be launched under this programme.

The function was also attended by Mr. Kevin Brady, Associate Vice-President and other Representatives of US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Foundation, Ms. Pat Felts, Dy. Chief Operating Officer, American Cancer Society (ACS), Dr. Shalini Vallabhan, Director, Asian Cancer Control Strategies, ACS and other Representatives of ACS, Ms. Stuti Kacker, Director, Indian Institute of Mass Communication, Representatives of GE Healthcare, John and Editha Kapoor Charitable Foundation and Ms. Bhavani Thyagarajan, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare.

Following is the summary of the Minister’s speech:

In India more than 40 per cent of cancer cases are caused due to tobacco use. The relationship between oral cancer and tobacco can be assessed from the WHO estimates according to which 91 per cent of oral cancers in South-East Asia are directly attributable to the use of tobacco. In view of the high prevalence of oral cancers and other cancers due to tobacco use my ministry has taken up very strong initiatives for tobacco control. India has been a forerunner in the fight against the tobacco epidemic which claims over 2000 lives in my countr
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