New Delhi: Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Tuesday called for a jihad against use of tobacco which causes nearly 0.9 million deaths in India every year.
"A jihad is needed against it (tobacco) to tell people that consumption of tobacco is dangerous. The whole nation needs to come together against tobacco," the health minister said after releasing the first Global Adult Tobacco Survey report.
The report revealed that nearly 0.9 million deaths occur in India every year due to tobacco as compared to 5.5 million deaths world wide.
India is the second largest consumer of tobacco products in the world and the third largest producer of tobacco.
"In India eight to 10 lakh persons die due to tobacco-related diseases every year and this reflects a higher mortality than the combined deaths resulting from other major diseases, such as tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and malaria," Azad added.
The minister laid stress on taking stricter and more effective measures for implementing the tobacco control programmes.