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Current Status and Actions to be taken on Implementation and Amendment of Tobacco Control Act

On 22 nd August, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. a discussion meeting was held on 'Current Status and
Actions to be taken on Implementation and Amendment of Tobacco Control Act' jointly
organized by Bangladesh Anti-Tobacco Alliance (BATA) and WBB Trust at Nasrul Hamid
Auditorium of Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU). In the meeting, the demand was made to withdraw the shares of the government from the tobacco company.
Nazrul Islam Mithu (President, DRU) was present as the chief guest in the meeting under the
chairmanship of Abu Naser Khan (Chairman, POBA; Adviser, BATA). The meeting was
moderated by Nurul Islam Haseeb (GS, DRU). Nasir Uddin Sheikh (Country Manager, Vital
Strategies), Helal Ahmed (GS, Prottasha Anti-Drug Organization), Bellal Hossain (ED,
Prottasha), Gaus Peary (Director, WBB Trust) and Kamal Moshareff (IT and Training Secretary,
DRU) were present as honorable negotiators. Moreover the members of Dhaka Reporters Unity and number of Tobacco Control activists were also present at the meeting. Syeda Anonna Rahman (Head of Program, TC;NCD, WBB Trust) presented the keynote at the meeting.
Discussants in the meeting said that since the tobacco control law was enacted, the tobacco companies have been creating obstacles in the implementation process of the law in various ways. Currently, companies are running different types of propaganda to create obstacles in the process of amending tobacco control laws. The interference of tobacco companies is clearly visible in almost all policy making in favor of tobacco control, not just legislative amendments. Recently, tobacco companies are also trying to suspend the local government's implementation guidelines for tobacco control laws.
Speakers at the meeting called for immediate withdrawal of government shares from tobacco
companies, the formulation of a code of conduct in accordance with Article 5.3 of the FCTC, the removal of tobacco companies from the list of all types of state awards. Moreover, they strongly demanded that the organizations working in tobacco control should be involved in Tobacco Control monitoring activities by ensuring financial allocation through Govt. organization.