PANJIM: National Organisation for Tobacco Eradication (NOTE) President Dr Shekhar Salkar on Friday said they were worried about the increasing number of ladies smoking in the State, though the smoking population in the State had reduced from 50 per cent in 1984 to10 per cent in 2018.
Addressing the media, Salkar said, “We are worried that number of ladies smoking is increasing a bit. This is because of our culture and tourism.”
He added, “In Goa 40 per cent of lady lung cancer patients are not smokers, so either they are getting passive smoking from their husbands or some other factors. In our last study the number of ladies smoking in villages was more. The ethnic Goan population consuming smokeless tobacco is small and in my view almost 90 per cent smokeless tobacco is consumed in Chimbel and Zuarinagar.”
He further said there are around 8 lakh deaths in the country due to cancer and the number is set to increase to 10 lakhs in 2020. “There is no safe limit for tobacco, even a single cigarette can kill. Smoking is slow poison. As per the report of Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) India 2016-17, of the total population in Goa 4.2 per cent smoke tobacco and 6.5 per cent use smokeless tobacco.”
Meanwhile, Consumer VOICE chief operating officer Ashim Sanyal said, “Goa is a real good example of tobacco control achievements.”
through partnership between government and civil society organisations. However more needs to be done to eradicate the tobacco menace. We want an amendment to the COPTA law and we are working on bringing legislation of modern times.”
Sanyal mentioned that under COPTA one cannot sell tobacco within 100 yards of an educational institution but this is violated all over the country and they will be writing to the Health ministry and the State governments on the issue.