Hundreds of police personnel belonging Belgaum district of Northern range of state police wing underwent training for implementation of smoking ban in public places and other guidelines regarding tobacco control here on Saturday at a work shop organized in the Police Bhavan Auditorium, Belgaum. Cops were told to get serious about implementation of Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) in other ranges as well.
Belgaum SP Dr Chandra Gupta addressed the gathering and said recently police have incorporated COTPA violations in the monthly crime review following the instructions from the Union government. Police have taken a novel and crucial role as protectors of health in reducing tobacco consumption with this step, he added.
Cancer surgeon Dr US Vishal Rao hailed the enthusiasm of cops in other districts while implementing COTPA and said requested the cops in Belgaum District to set a new bench mark in this regard. “COTPA rules, which go a long way in enriching public health, can be better executed with the active involvement of cops at the police station level. Then only implementation of smoking ban in public places and other rules under COTPA can be seen on ground, he added.
It can be noted here that in order to effectively implement the COTPA laws across the state, government has instructed the police department to conduct training programs in different parts of the state.
Why Tobacco control?
Tobacco is one of the world’s leading causes of death and disability, killing more than 1 million people in India annually. As per the report released by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare as well as recent studies, one tobacco related death happening every eight second in the country! Karnataka presently has around Two Crore consumers, one third of who may die a premature death. Taking cognizance of this matter and in order to reduce consumption across the country, the state government has taken serious steps to implement COTPA.
The work shop was organized in association with Cancer Prevention Project, Institute of Public Health and Karnataka Police Department.