SRINAGAR: 1700 people have died of various types of cancers in Kashmir in the last three s and smoking has been the main reason, a doctors’ body said today.
The Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) President DAK Dr Nisar ul Hassan in a statement issued to media here today said that the state was emerging as the smoking capital of north India and cigarette smoking was almost double the nationwide prevalence of 5.7%.
“J&K has 12% cigarette smokers, 3.8% bidi smokers and 8% smokeless (chewable) tobacco users. Tobacco is a risk for heart attacks, strokes, COPD, cancers, hypertension and peripheral vascular disease,” Dr Nisar said.
The DAK President said that the rise of cancers in Kashmir from 1448 cases in 2009 to 1768 cases in 2014 has been due to high rates of smoking in children and young adults. He said a study by SKIMS has found that the smoking related cancers like lung cancers have high incidence in the valley.
Tobacco is the single greatest cause of preventable deaths and according to WHO 06 million people die annually due to tobacco. 1700 people have died of various types of cancers in Kashmir in last 3 years and smoking has been the main reason,” he said.
Demanding a complete ban on import, manufacturing, transportation and sale of all forms of tobacco in Kashmir, Dr Nisar demanded said that the tobacco is the deadliest artifact in the history of human civilization and the only way to put an end to this world’s leading cause of death is by enactment of outright ban on tobacco which is well within the power of the state.