Call to keep youth away from tobacco

Kathmandu, December 31:

Leaders from all walks of life should work to keep younger generation away from tobacco products, speakers said at a programme today.

Speaking at the ‘Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC)’ with regard to children, organised by the CWIN, Asta Laxmi Shakya, a Member of Parliament said, “Educated people and those holding responsible positions such as doctors, teachers, politicians, and journalists should enlighten young people about adverse effects of tobacco.”

According to CWIN, 48.4 per cent of tobacco consumers are below 15 years and 55 per cent of the total population consumes tobacco.

Shakya said that the ratification of the FCTC has brought out many facts and figures related to harm caused by tobacco consumption.

“The implementation of the convention can be initiated from the premises of Singh Durbar, Ministry of Health and Population and other ministries by declaring them as tobacco-free zones,” she added.

“The government should identify reasons behind consumption of these products. It should formulate policies to control tobacco consumption.”

Dr Nirakar Man Shrestha, chief specialist at the Ministry of Health and Population, said children get into habit of smoking due to peer pressure and usually have little or no knowledge on how to resist them.

Dr Shrestha added that tobacco consumption tops the rank among the eight factors that cause the spread of non-communicable diseases in both developing and developed countries.

He added that children born to the parents who are into the habit of tobacco consumption have high chances of suffering from pneumonia and bronchitis.

Nirmal Raj Poudel, president of the Advertising Agencies Association of Nepal, said a national-level programme is important to keep children away from tobacco.

Over 6,800 chemicals are present in a cigarette stick.