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Priyank Kanoongo, Chairman of the National Commission for the Protection of Children’s Rights (NCPCR), lobbied for increased tariffs on a wide variety of tobacco products during the “Freedom From Tobacco: What India Wants” webinar at the occasion of National Youth Day.

According to Kanoongo, the price and ease of access to these deadly tobacco products are detrimental, especially for young people. The increased tariffs will not only make these items illegal, but the additional funds will also be used to treat and rehabilitate those who have been affected by tobacco-related ailments.

The NCPCR has proposed increased taxes on movies, OTTs, and other media that depict tobacco use in any way, in addition to higher taxes on a wide variety of tobacco products. “Imposing a higher tax on media that depicts tobacco use would force individuals to pay more and help prevent the glorification of tobacco products. The NCPCR also called on the government to spend all the money from tax hikes on rehabilitation and prevention programs “He informed me.

Read also : ‘POCSO e-box’: NCPCR to report child abuse

“Tobacco companies are waging psychological warfare. They push the sale of tobacco products like ace gutkha and beedi alongside chocolates, candy and toys to young children by placing tobacco-related advertisements at their eyes on the selling points,” Kanoongo said.

India currently loses over 13 million people each year to tobacco and second-hand smoke. “Tobacco use is on the rise, and it is worrying to observe that young people aged 13 to 15 represent 8.5% of those who use it,” said Professor (Dr) Uma Kumar, Head of the Department of Rheumatology, AIIMS, New Delhi.

Smoking tobacco for a long time is dangerous and has been linked to cardiovascular disease, neurological disorders, strokes, reduced immunity, recurrent infections, respiratory conditions and autoimmune diseases. She advocated for various policy measures to protect young people from this danger.

Shweta Shalini said young people are most at risk from tobacco.DNA India/wikipedia

Shweta Shalini, a youth activist from Maharashtra and BJP spokesperson, said Swami Vivekananda defined the youth as the strength of the country and their health should be their first priority. Today, however, they are the ones most at risk from tobacco. She stressed the importance of strong tobacco control policies. Referring to the e-book “What India Wants”, which was released during the show, Shalini said that it has been shown once again that the people of India want an increase in tobacco taxes to protect young people. of this threat. Even a significant proportion of cigarette smokers favor a tax increase.

The e-book “What India Wants”, produced for this occasion, is a compilation of the results of numerous polls and surveys, which show that more than 88% of the people questioned want the new smoke-free regulations to come into force. The survey results also show that the general public feels compelled to make India tobacco-free. This e-book includes a scientific study conducted in ten states as well as multiple Twitter polls conducted by affected individuals.

Also read: 87% of participants do not support the ban proposal

Tobacco use is spreading across the country and rapidly affecting our children and youth. According to the most recent Global Youth Tobacco Survey, children as young as ten are now using tobacco products (GYTS-4). As a result, experts are advocating for higher taxes and passage of planned revisions to the tobacco control law, COTPA, to further deter cigarette smoking.

The central government is also organizing a number of activities at the national level as part of the National Youth Week, which begins on January 12.


(Keywords: strict laws, tax hike, tobacco products, Shweta Shalini, Maharashtra youth activist and BJP spokesperson, cardiovascular diseases, neurological disorders, strokes, lowered immunity, recurrent infections, respiratory conditions and Autoimmune Diseases, AIIMS, New Delhi.)

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