Prominence of warnings on tobacco packaging; India slips to 136

India ranks 136 among 198 countries in terms of prominence of pictorial health warnings on tobacco packaging, down from the 123rd position it had managed in 2012.

PTI| Updated: Oct 14, 2014, 21:55 PM IST

New Delhi: India ranks 136 among 198 countries in terms of prominence of pictorial health warnings on tobacco packaging, down from the 123rd position it had managed in 2012.

The report ranks 198 countries and territories on the size of their health warnings on cigarette packages, lists countries and territories that require picture warnings, and documents the global momentum towards implementation of plain packaging.

Cigarette Package Health Warnings: International Status Report 2014, prepared by Canadian Cancer Society, was released today at the sixth session of the conference of the parties to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) in Moscow.

"As per the 2014 report, the three top countries based on their average front and back size of pack warnings are Thailand (85 per cent), Australia (82.5 per cent) and Uruguay (80 per cent). India also now ranks last among other SAARC nations that have graphic health warnings," Voluntary Health Association of India, which released the report here, said.

VHAI is a health and development advocacy society.

"India is one of the few countries requiring graphic warning labels to be placed only on one side of tobacco packages, covering only 20 per cent of the entire package. There is strong evidence to suggest that tobacco users are less likely to notice the image if they are only on one side," it said.