Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar recently opened up about one of his biggest regrets in life, and it has nothing to do with politics. According to Pawar, his biggest regret is being prone to the use of tobacco.
Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar recently opened up about one of his biggest regrets in life, and it has nothing to do with politics. According to Pawar, his biggest regret is being prone to the use of tobacco. The former Maharashtra Chief Minister said that he wished someone had warned him against using tobacco. Attending the launch of an Indian Dental Association’s (IDA) event in Mumbai, Pawar said that he regretted having used tobacco and betel nut. He added that he wished someone had warned him against tobacco use 40 years ago.
Pawar, a cancer survivor, said that he had to undergo a surgery, a complete removal of teeth. He couldn’t open his mouth and faced difficulty in swallowing and speaking. The former Union Agriculture Minister also pledged support to the Indian Dental Association’s cause of eradicating oral cancer and curbing the menace of tobacco usage. The NCP chief was speaking at the launch of the Indian Dental Association’s mission to eradicate oral cancer by 2022. The event was held to commemorate the World Oral Health Day which is observed on March 20.
According to a recent report by the Global Tobacco Atlas, more than 17,000 lives in India are lost every week due to tobacco use. It comes as a shocker but India is home to an estimated 625,000 child smokers in the age group of 10 to 14 years. According to the tobacco atlas prepared by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and US-based Vital Strategies, worth 103 million adults in India aged between 15 years and above, still smoking daily, the economic cost of smoking in India is Rs 1,818,691 million. The economic cost includes both the direct cost of healthcare and the indirect cost of lost productivity from early death and illness. Adding to the shocking report is the fact that more than 429,500 boys and 195,500 girls are found to be using tobacco. It was also reported that men smoke more than women daily with 90 million and 13 million numbers respectively. The report states that the tobacco industry is a powerful force that does not fear actions of smaller nation-states because of their extensive resources and global market power. Larger economies and nations have the opportunity to help the smaller allies face down this threat, it added.