World No Tobacco day observed across JK
DHSK, NIT Sgr, JKVHA organize webinars
Srinagar: Even though Jammu and Kashmir is witnessing a steep rise in consumption and use of tobacco products various organizations on Monday observed the ‘World No Tobacco Day’ stressing on the slogan ‘Commit to Quit’.
On Monday the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir conducted an online workshop of Health officials of Jammu and Kashmir regarding “Covid-19 and Tobacco Cessation.
The DHSK conducted the workshop under National Tobacco Control Program in collaboration with International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, New Delhi which was attended by renowned national experts, health professionals and healthcare staff of the directorate.
In his video message regarding World No Tobacco Day, Directorate of Health Services Kashmir, Dr Mushtaq Ahmed Rather said tobacco adversely affects the immune system and impairs lung function, making users more vulnerable to developing respiratory infections.
“Covid-19 is an infectious disease that mainly attacks the lungs and tobacco use continues to be one of the biggest public health threats especially during this time. I appeal to people to quit smoking and save themselves from Covid,” he said.
His message was broadcasted in leading TV channels of Kashmir division. Dr Mushtaq said when one takes tobacco and shares it with others there are always changes of infection transfer.
A spokesperson of DHSK said, a total of 96 health officials of J&K attended the said workshop. Deputy Director Schemes, Dr Abdul Rashid Najar graced the workshop as Chief Guest, Assistant Director (HeB), while Dr Nishat Shaheen inaugurated the session with welcome speech and opening remarks.
It was followed by lectures by renowned national experts and speakers through detailed presentations.
The resource persons for the workshop included Dr Vikram Mohanty, Associate Professor, Maulana Azad institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, Dr Amit Yadav Senior Technical Advisor, International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, Dr Shivam Kapoor and Dr Muhammad Naser.
The workshop was organized in commemoration of World No Tobacco Day 2021 under the theme “Commit to quit”. Also health advisories were published in the leading newspapers of Kashmir division regarding “COVID-19 and Tobacco Cessation”.
The spokesman said, Radio campaign has been broadcasted regarding “Covid and Tobacco Cessation” in the leading radio channels of Kashmir division to commemorate World No Tobacco Day.
Meanwhile, J&K Voluntary Health Association (JKVHA) in collaboration with Institution of Engineers (India) J&K State Centre, Srinagar, Divisional Administration Kashmir, Department of Food & Drug Administration & State Emergency Operation Centre, Srinagar organized a Webinar on the occasion.
Executive Director, J&K Kashmir Voluntary Health Association A.M. Mir (IAS Retired) welcomed the participants and said that community awareness is essential to control the use of tobacco particularly in the youth in order to make J&K tobacco free. The Chief Guest on the occasion Shakeel ul Rehman, Commissioner, Food & Drug Administration, Govt. of J&K, stressed on the need for integrated approach to eradicate the menace of smoking.
He said that every individual should be aware of the risks associated with tobacco and tobacco products as smokers are more vulnerable than non smokers particularly in COVID-19 Pandemic.
The speakers included Er. Aamir Ali, Chairman Institution of Engineers (India) J&K State Centre, Shabir Ahmed Lone, Food Safety Officer, Food & Drug Administration, Dr (Professor) Abdul Majid Ganai, HOD Community Medicine, Govt. Medical College Baramulla, AK Wani, Program Manager, J&K Voluntary Health Association, Ms Purva Singh, National Consultant (Non-Communicable Diseases), World Health Organisation, Hilal Mir, Asst Commissioner Food Safety. A video message was also webcast from Dr (Professor) GQ Allaqaband, Chairman, J&K Voluntary Health Association, who is currently in the US. The Vote of thanks was presented by Er. M. Aaquib Sultana Waheed Deva, Honorary Secretary IEIKSC. The feedback from participants and response of experts was coordinated by Bilquees Dar & Mohmmad Suhail Wani Consultants, Disaster Management.
Meanwhile, the National Institute of Technology (NIT) Srinagar also observed World No Tobacco Day and during the event both faculty and staff members took a pledge not to consume tobacco and its products and encourage others for the same.
Addressing the virtual ceremony, Director NIT Srinagar, Prof. Dr. Rakesh Sehgal said smoking harms almost every part of the body and increases risk of many diseases and infections.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has designated 31 May as ‘World No Tobacco Day ‘and this year’s theme was ‘Commit to Quit’, which assumes significant importance in the present times of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our youth should stay away from consuming or using tobacco products and discourage others as well. It exposes the human body to various infections and each year thousands of people lose their lives, he said.