Battling Against Tobacco
Anti-tobacco activists and civil society organizations have long been campaigning against the manufacture of tobacco products because of their highly addictive and carcinogenic nature. According to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS 2010), released by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in October 2010, more than one-third (35 per cent) of adults in India use tobacco in some or the other form, including about 29 per cent in Andhra Pradesh itself.
The Price Stabilization Fund Trust of India pegs the country as the second largest producer of tobacco in the world and as it turns out, Andhra Pradesh is one the highest producers of tobacco in the country. After continued protests, AP finally became the 17th state in India to ban tobacco products under the Food and Safety Act in January 2013. But anti-tobacco champion, Dr Vijay Anand Reddy, director, Apollo Cancer Hospital, says that the ban has not been enforced strictly. To push his agenda forward, he has been on a fast since Monday.