VoTV in “Regulations Governing Tobacco depiction in Movies and Television: The Way Forward”

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The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in collaboration with World Health organization (WHO) and Salaam Bombay Foundation, Mumbai organised a meeting on “Regulations Governing Tobacco depiction in Movies and Television: The Way Forward” on Wednesday, April 17, 2013  for the CBFC to remove all the impediments and strengthen the implementation of rules for Tobacco Control .The workshop was initiative was taken to provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to participate in the open discussion, share the experience and ensure proper implementation of the regulations for tobacco control.

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VoTV Sensitization for the CBFC was conducted during the event. Mr. Amit Baliyan and Mrs. Sumitra Pednekar (widow of Late Mr.Satish Pednekar who was a cancer patient) shared their grievances  of becoming tobacco victims. Mr. Amit Baliyan who is a 25-year-old cancer patient suffered a lot due to his habit. He smoked as well as chewed tobacco for nearly 5 to 6 years. Apart from financial loss the personal suffering was way too much. Post operation, he faced a lot of difficulties – tried drinking water, he felt the pain of thousands of needles in his mouth. His tongue had turned into a white patch, covered with numerous red blisters, big and small. He could not bear to look in the mirror because the right half of his face had become hollow. Despite his athletic body he had lost 26 kilograms in two months, could not move his neck and couldn’t sleep due to the pain. He used to be a cricketer and always had a dream to become a cricket coach. He said, “My parents must have forgiven me but I can never forgive myself.” Late Mr. Satish Pednekar was a cancer patient died of oral cancer in 2011 at the age of 60, because of his habit of chewing tobacco and pan masala (mawa masala). He was Maharashtra’s former home and labour minister. He had been keeping ill since 2007. His lengthy struggle against cancer ruined him and his family financially and emotionally.

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