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Facts about tobacco users in india


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With 34.6 per cent of adults as tobacco users in India, it has become world’s second largest tobacco consuming nation. “Around 274.9 million Indians use tobacco everyday”, says the Global Adult Tobacco Survey.

The survey also brings in some eye opening facts like; more than 15 per cent of children between the age group of 15-18 are tobacco users.

  • Current tobacco use in any form: 34.6% of adults; 47.9% of males and 20.3% of females
     
  • Current tobacco smokers: 14.0% of adults: 24.3% of males and 2.9% of females
     
  • Current cigarette smokers: 5.7% of adults: 10.3% of males and 0.8% of females.
     
  • Current bidi smokers: 9.2% of adults: 16.0% of males and 1.9% of females.
     
  • Current users of smokeless tobacco: 25.9% of adults: 32.9% of males and 18.4% of females.
     
  • Among daily tobacco users, 60.2% consume tobacco within half an hour of waking up
     
  • Average age at initiation of tobacco use was 17.8 with 25.8% of females starting tobacco use before the age of 15
     
  • Among minors (age 15-17), 9.6% consume tobacco in some form and most of them are able to purchase tobacco products.
     
  • Five in ten current smokers (46.6%) and users of smokeless tobacco (45.2%) planned to quit or at lease thought of quitting
     
  • Among smokers and users of smokeless tobacco who visited a health care provider, 46.3% of smokers and 26.7% of users of smokeless tobacco were advised to quit by a health care provider
     
  • 52.3% people were exposed to second-hand smoke at home and 29.0% at public places (mainly in public transport and restaurants)
     
  • About two in three adults (64.5%) noticed advertisement or promotion of tobacco products.
     
  • Three in five current tobacco users (61.1%) noticed the health warning on tobacco packages and one in three current tobacco users (31.5%) thought of quitting tobacco because of the warning label.

Source: Global Adult Tobacco Survey-India, 2010

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Tuesday, May 10, 2011


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Corruption Watch

The bad news is that corruption has not only sustained but has grown in size and stature in the country. With scams being a regular feature, seventy per cent respondents in a survey have rightfully opined that corruption has continued to increase in India. One in every two interviewed admit having paid a bribe for availing public services during last one year. Transparency International's latest survey reveals that the political parties top the chart for the most corrupt public institutions, followed by police force and legislatures. No wonder, India continues to make new records on the global corruption arena!

The shocking revelation is that the health and education sectors haven't remained untouched by this phenomenon. With 5th and 6th positions respectively for these sectors on the public perception chart on corruption, corruption has crept insidiously into these sectors of hope for the masses. With bureaucracy being fourth in the list of corrupt institutions in the country, corruption seems to have been non-formally institutionalized with little hope if public services would ever be effective in the country. With economic growth having literally institutionalized corruption, are we now expecting corrupt to be socially responsible - a different CSR.

Poor. Who?

Not giving 'aid' to India is one thing but calling it 'rich' is quite another. If one in three of the world's malnourished children live in India, what does average daily income of $3 indicate? It perhaps means that there is a relative decline in poverty - people are 'less poor' than what they used to be in the past. But having crossed the World Bank arbitrary threshold of $2 a day does not absolve the 'developed' countries of their obligation to part with 0.7 per cent of their Gross National Income in development aid. Should this three-decade old figure not be revised?  

An interesting debate in UK's House of Commons delved on future of development assistance by the British Government. While prioritizing limited resources has been a concern, there has been no denying the fact that development aid must be guided towards tangible gains over a short period of time to start with. There are difficult choices for elected governments to make - should they invest in long-term primary education or in short-term university scholarships? Which of these will bring gains and trigger long-term transformation in the society. As politicians continue to be divided on the matter, poverty persists!!   

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