KARACHI- Prominent psychiatrist Dr Syed Mubeen Akhtar has said that incidences of heart disease, stroke and lungs, mouth and stomach caners are on the rise because of use of tobacco products.
Speaking at a press conference at Karachi Press Club on the eve of World Anti-Tobacco Day, he said that of a total 6,440 million world population, about 1200m people smoke cigarettes costing around Rs5000m.
He said tobacco, including `Shisha’, is injurious to health and causes many illnesses like heart disease, chest disease, mouth cancer, throat tongue, stomach, teeth and some sexual disorders. He said these diseases could be simply prevented by quitting the habit of using tobacco products.
He said that the habit of cigarette smoking and chewing of tobacco with betel leaf was more rampant in developing countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, and India. He said trend of tobacco use was increasing day by day and young generation is its prime target.
He pointed out that cigarettes smoking was much less in countries having high literacy rate.
“Although government has promulgated an ordinance in 2003 whereby smoking cigarette was to be prohibited within 500 yards of limits of any educational institution, it was not being implemented,” he deplored.
Underscoring the need for launching a sustainable awareness campaign against tobacco chewing and smoking, Dr Mubeen said:” According to teachings of Islam any substance that harms the mind or body is a sin.”
He urged the government, health organizations and electronic and print media to play their due role to inform people about the hazards of tobacco products.
He demanded of Sindh governor and chief minister to impose a ban on sale and purchase of tobacco products in province.