Skip to contentSkip to navigation

Warning on tobacco packs

38,740 signatures of people across the country including Assam, who strongly support the implementation of new and larger health warnings on tobacco packages in India on April 1, has been submitted to Shri J. P. Nadda Hon’ble Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare on March 18. 

The signatures were collected in an online and offline petition started by Sunita Tomar, an oral cancer survivor. 

The new warnings reaffirm Indian global leadership, projecting the country into one of the first positions for the largest tobacco health warnings in the world. Countries like Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, have taken the cue from India and have dramatically increased the size of pictorial warnings on tobacco packages.“India has demonstrated global leadership with its new 85% pictorial health warnings. It is essential that these warnings appear on tobacco packages as soon as possible. A picture says a thousand words. Picture warnings are especially important for those who cannot read,” said Rob Cunningham – Senior Policy Analyst at the Canadian Cancer Society – author of the report Cigarette Package Health Warnings.  

International studies demonstrate that larger, pictorial warning on tobacco packages are effective way to INFORM users about the dangers of tobacco dependence; CONVINCE youth not to start; MOTIVATE users to quit and COUNTER tobacco industry efforts to use packages as marketing tools. Effective pictorial warning increase knowledge about risks associated with smoking and can decrease intentions to smoke among adolescents persuade smokers to quit, and keep ex-smokers from starting again. Pictorial warning have a greater impact than text-only labels and can be recognized by low-literacy audiences and children — two vulnerable population groups.

A recent MoHFW-WHO supported PHFI study, estimated that the total economic costs attributable to tobacco use from all diseases in India in the year 2011 amounted to a staggering Rs 1, 04,500 crores — 12% more than the combined state and central government expenditure on health care in the same year.

India has 12 crore tobacco users, according to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) 2009-2010, which means every ninth Indian consumes tobacco. Tobacco related diseases kills about 2500 Indians daily and over 10 lakh Indians every year. It is estimated that approximately 5500 children, some as young as 8 years old, start consuming tobacco daily.


Author info

AT News's picture

Assam Times Staff

Add new comment


Republish this content

Random Stories

Petrol pumps to go dry on Monday

19 May 2012 - 3:44am | editor
Petrol pumps across Assam are likely to go dry because of the Assam Petroleum Mazdoor Union’s strike from Monday alleging government failure to provide adequate safety and security to petroleum...

ULFA chief freed, thanks govt

1 Jan 2011 - 3:42pm | editor
The proposed ULFA-Government peace talks seems to have crossed a major hurdle when ULFA chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa has been released after he procured bail from a local TADA court in Guwaahti. The...

End violence with talks: Sarkar

21 Aug 2014 - 5:12pm | AT News
Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar has appealed to Assam and Nagaland chief ministers to amicably settle the issue of border disturbance through dialogue. Talking to reporters in Guwahati after...