Tobacco alone kills 57000 people affects 1.2 million people with 8 killer diseases in Bangladesh a year. It also causes a large economic loss of about 11000 crore BDT per year in treatment, death and paralysis of a these population. However, the price of tobacco products did not rise even though the regular commodity prices went high by last few years.
A study by World Health Organization and World Bank revealed that an increase of 10% tax on tobacco decreases death rate at an anticipatory level in both high and low income countries. Speakers said these at a demonstration organized by SERAC-Bangladesh, Bangladesh Anti Tobacco Alliance and Disa in Mymensingh on Thursday at 11 AM.
SERAC-Bangladesh?s Executive Director S M Shaikat said, Articles 11 and 18 (1) of Bangladesh constitution ensured fundamental human rights, and public health protection. So it is the duty of the government to protect public health from tobacco harms by imposing high taxes.
The demonstration moderated by SERAC-Bangladesh?s project officer Barkatullah Bhuiyan and Disa Executive Director Md. Rafiqul Islam, SERAC?s program officer Md. Oli Ahad, banker Shuvo Das, Nannu Mia spoke among others.
SERAC?s program officer Md. Oli Ahad said, every year we lose 2912 crore BDT after bidi consumption which could be used to generate employment for many. Besides, the annual expenses after bidi smoking can be converted into purchasing 485 crore eggs or 29 crore chicken, or 2.9 million cows, or 1.4 million ton rice, or 2.3 million rickshaws.
Others included Md. Shamsul Alam, Naim Mia, Miraz Ali Akash and many locals deliberately participated in the demonstration.