The Media Sensitization Workshop on Tobacco Control, jointly organized by the Voluntary Health Association of India (VHAI), Bihar Institute of Economic Studies (BIES), Bihar Voluntary Health Association (BVHA), and AFTD Bihar, aimed to raise awareness among media personnel about the health risks associated with tobacco use and the effective implementation of tobacco control laws in Bihar. The workshop underscored the vital role of the media in advocacy and awareness campaigns related to tobacco control.
- Welcome Address: Dr. Pyare Lal, Director of BIES, welcomed participants and highlighted the workshop’s objectives and importance.
- Inauguration: Shri. Nitish Mishra, Former Minister, Government of Bihar & MLA, Bihar Vidhan Sabha, inaugurated the event by lighting the lamp, emphasizing the commitment to tobacco control.
- Health Harms of Tobacco Use: Dr. K. Saurav, WHO Consultant, Bihar, presented data on the health consequences of tobacco use in Bihar.
- Psychological Aspect and Quitting Tobacco: Dr. Sarita Shivangi, Clinical Psychologist, discussed the psychological aspects of tobacco addiction and strategies for quitting.
- Adverse Effects of Tobacco: Dr. Asif Raja, General Secretary, Bihar Tuberculosis Association, discussed the broader impacts of tobacco use on health and society.
- Burden of Tobacco Use and CTOPA 2003: Dr. Pyare Lal addressed the economic and social burdens of tobacco use and the importance of the CTOPA 2003 act.
- Overview of Tobacco Control Laws & Need for Strengthening: Mr. Binoy Mathew, Programme Manager, VHAI, provided insights into existing tobacco control laws and the need for their enhancement.
- Role of Media in Tobacco Control: Shri. Nitish Mishra highlighted the media’s influential role in tobacco control advocacy.
Open Session: An interactive session allowed media personnel to engage with experts, discussing challenges and solutions in reporting on tobacco-related issues.
Closing Remarks: Shri Raghupati Singh, President of BVHA, expressed gratitude to participants and encouraged them to become advocates for tobacco control in their respective media organizations.
Conclusion: The workshop successfully raised awareness among media professionals about the hazards of tobacco use and the importance of robust tobacco control laws. It encouraged media engagement in advocacy and awareness campaigns for tobacco control. The event facilitated collaboration among stakeholders, strengthening efforts toward a tobacco-free society.