Dr. Sonu Goel
Globally, tobacco use is a major preventable cause of premature mortality and morbidity. WHO Framework on Tobacco Control (FCTC) recommends for progressively establishing and maintaining a system to regularly collect and disseminate information related to deleterious effects of tobacco use, on various legislation and regulations and other tobacco control activities at regional and global level. National Tobacco Control Program (NTCP) at Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India also aims to bring awareness about harmful effects of tobacco use and tobacco control laws along with its effective implementation. In this context, School of Public Health, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh, India has developed a Resource Centre for Tobacco Control (RCTC) which shall aim to serve as one-point reference system for all tobacco control updates and resource materials in the country. This virtual web-based resource center will provide correct, reliable, updated and contextual data and statistics in tobacco control which can be effectively utilized by policy makers, program implementer, academicians, researchers, non-governmental organizations and other tobacco control advocates for rational decision making. The portal shall also serve as a platform to share success stories and best practices in the area of tobacco control across different states of India for their replication or adaptation in other states for effective enactment of NTCP. Besides, the platform will be immensely useful for general public and tobacco users for getting information about harmful effect of tobacco use and plan for successfully quitting tobacco products. I truly believe that this initiative shall go a long way in fulfilling the dream of ‘Tobacco Free India’.