I am writing this letter to suggesting that Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship (TAPS) should be banned completely. 

TAPS is appealing to children. It is a tactic used by the tobacco industry to attract children, make them regular smokers and deter tobacco control efforts. Research confirms relation between TAPS and children taking to smoking. According to WHO, one third of the youth starts smoking as result of exposure to TAPS. In Pakistan, 1200 children start smoking daily. 

One of the tools to deceive the people is Corporate Social Responsibility (CSRs) sponsored by Tobacco Industry. The tobacco industry actively engages in CSR activities especially in KPK in an attempt to develop goodwill among the public. Donating to charitable activities and sponsoring different activities are designed by tobacco companies to be good corporate citizens and distract from the fact that they sell addictive and deadly products. Tobacco companies are using CSRs to promote its products and tobacco use among youth. The tobacco industry also strives to counter the negative attention surrounding its deadly products. Considering CSR activities against the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), nearly 28 counties including Ireland, Malaysia, Nepal, Uruguay and Russia ban CSRs sponsored by the tobacco industry. 

Articles 5.3 and 13 of the World Health Organization, Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) require prohibiting tobacco industry CSR activities because they inherently promote tobacco use, tobacco companies and tobacco product brands. Furthermore, the FCTC Article 5.3 Guidelines urge states to prohibit partnerships between governments and the tobacco industry, including so-called socially responsible activities. The Prohibition of Smoking and Protection of Non-Smokers Health (amended bill 2016) tabled in the senate is an attempt to fulfil FCTC article5.3 and article 13 requirements and save our next generation from tobacco addiction. 

SYED AKHTAR HUSSAIN,  

Islamabad, September 29.