A total of 152 lawmakers have written to Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque demanding an amendment to the Tobacco Control Act, which they say, will help save people’s lives from the harmful effects of tobacco.
Chairman of Bangladesh Parliamentary Forum for Health and Wellbeing Prof. Dr. Md. Habibe Millat MP handed over the letter signed by the legislators to the Health Minister in parliament on Monday.Receiving the letter, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said all possible measures will be taken to fulfill the demand from the members of parliament.
In the letter, they said that 35.3 percent people in Bangladesh use tobacco products and 1.61 lakh people die every year due to tobacco habit.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Md. Habibe Millat said they have given the letter to achieve the goal to be smoke-free by 2040.
The letter recommended that six issues should be included in the amended law in light of the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
These include banning smoking in all public places and demolishing smoke-free zones, banning display of tobacco products at sales points, banning corporate social responsibility programme or CSR of tobacco companies, banning sale of retail cigarettes or bidis and banning import and sale of E-cigarettes and tobacco.
Bangladesh Parliamentary Forum for Health and Wellbeing is a parliamentary forum which has been working for a long time to formulate policy on tobacco control.