Chennai, Sep 24 (UNI) Tamil Nadu Governor Surjit Singh Barnala today welcomed the ban on smoking in public and suggested that religious heads of various institutions must be involved in making the people to shun smoking.
Inaugurating Tobacco Control Task Forces in Universities here, the Governor, appreciating Union Health Minsiter Dr Anbumani for his efforts to make India, tobacco free, said the ban on smoking in public should be strictly enforced and punishment for violation should be made severe.
''Selling tobacco cigars, pan, gutka and other intoxicants to children should be banned. Creation of awareness on the ill- effects of use of tobacco should be taken on a massive scale'', the Governor said.
He said smokers of cigar not only fall a prey to disceases like cancer, but they also affect the non-smokers when the others were exposed to smoke. ''About 700 million children are exposed to passive smoking, while eight out of ten children were reported to be exposed to passive smoking, both at home and outside '', the Governor lamented.
The Governor said many might not be knowing that Sikhs,who number about two crores in India and about 30 lakhs in other countries of the world, do not smoke.
Educational institutions should create awareness among the students about the ill effects of tobacco, caution them and prevent them from becoming victims of tobacco and other vices, he said.
Voluntary organisations should also be involved in the mission to create a tobacco free society and they should form clusters in every block to prevent the youth taking to smoking and using tobacco by explaining the ill-effects, the Governor said.
UNI WS RL NS2031