GUWAHATI, May 28 - More than 700 citizens took part in a walkathon organised on the occasion of World No Tobacco Day by the Consumers’ Legal Protection Forum, Assam, and Consumer Voice, New Delhi, in association with city-based NGO Pathik, here today.
The theme of the walk was ‘Make Guwahati a Tobacco Free City’. It was started at 7 am from Hiteswar Saikia College, Sixmile, to the Ganesh Mandir Indoor Stadium, Khanapara, via the U-turn near the Veterinary College.
The walkathon was flagged off by ADGP, Assam Police (CID) Dr LR Bishnoi, in the presence of Debeswar Malakar, Commissioner, Guwahati Municipal Corporation, Dr Amal Chandra Kataki, Director, Dr B Borooah Cancer Institute, Dr Arundhati Deka, State Nodal Officer, State Tobacco Control Cell and Akash Pradhan, Senior Executive, Assam Cancer Care Foundation.
The purpose of the walkathon was to create awareness among the masses to make the tobacco control measures more effective, to warn the young generation about the harms caused by tobacco use and make Guwahati a tobacco-free city.
The participants included students and teachers, senior citizens, celebrities, civil society members, consumer organisations, women’s organisations, police and government officials.
The walkathon was followed by an awareness meeting held at the Ganesh Mandir Indoor Stadium, where participants took a pledge not to consume tobacco and tobacco-related products ever in their lives. According to the Global Adults Tobacco Survey, in Assam, 25.3 per cent men, 0.8 per cent women and 13.3 per cent of all adults currently smoke tobacco, and 50.5 per cent men, 32.5 per cent women and 41.7 per cent of all adults use smokeless tobacco.