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Strategic plan for tobacco control sought

Bangladesh Anti-Tobacco Alliance sought strategic plan of action for tobacco control. In a human chain program held in front of national press club on 11 April 2017, they expressed the urge. ‘In spite of various tactics of crafty tobacco companies, Bangladesh gained positive success in tobacco control. To ensure the sustainability of this progress, specific national strategic plan need to be taken with series of programs’, activists suggests in the program that has been jointly organized by Work for a Better Bangladesh (WBB) Trust and Bangladesh Anti-Tobacco Alliance (BATA).

Speakers said, ‘National Strategic Plan of Action for Tobacco control 2007-2010 has been implemented in Bangladesh previously. But after 2010 no specific strategic plan for tobacco control has taken in the country. Due to absence of strategic plan, different government organizations are conducting tobacco control activities in an isolated way. Even, despite the active roles by the National Tobacco Control Cell, tobacco control activities are not properly coordinating. So; giving priority on overall tobacco control as well as law implementation, it is necessary to adopt a strategic plan.

Tobacco companies’ crafty tactics cannot be possible to prevent due to lack of strategic plan. Bangladesh is lag behind in many cases including policy implementation despite the progress. If there is a specific strategic plan for tobacco control, it will be easy to implement the series of activities to make the tobacco free periodically as per that plan.’ They also added, ‘as per global plan and Prime Minister’s declaration what will be the goal of tobacco control is very obvious. It is needed to clear what have to be done to achieve the goal and there come the demand of a plan’, they added.

In the program, Khairuddin Ahmed Mukul, Secretary General of NATAB; Syeda Anonna Rahman, Program Manager of WBB Trust; Sultana Razia, Executive Director of LRB Foundation; Kazi Hasibul Huq, Advocacy Officer of AID Foundation; Cameliya Chowdhury, President of Shushashoner Jonno Nagorik from Bongshal Thana Branch; Mohiuddin Rasel, Research Assistant of Tobacco Control Research Cell (TCRC) and representative from other anti-tobacco organizations were present and spoke.