ISLAMABAD (APP) Many public and private offices have no proper mechanism to check violation of anti-tobacco laws affecting the health of non-smokers. Citizens complain that management of majority of offices have failed to implement tobacco control laws with complete ban on smoking during office timings. They say smokers openly use cigarettes in offices even in the presence of other colleagues, which is clear violation of the concerned laws. According to such laws all public and work places have become smoke free, they add. They demand that such smokers should not be allowed smoking or using tobacco at their offices or public places. They say complete implementation of law will help protect health of non-smokers. Muhammad Hamid, a government employee said, I am a heart patient and smoke is dangerous for my health but my colleagues openly use cigarettes despite knowing my problem. He said if anti-tobacco laws exist then why such violators have been given free hand to break the law. They should be treated as law violators and office management should take action against them, he demanded. Zahid Haleem, who is working in a private company, said it is an unbecoming attitude of the smokers who totally ignore people in their surroundings by smoking openly. He said, If they have no worries about their own health at least they should know that their acts may cause severe medical complications for their colleagues who also inhale smoke when they use tobacco. Dr Sharif Astori from the Federal Government Poly Clinic said the use of tobacco is a major public health challenge in the country where 100,000 annual deaths occur due to tobacco related diseases. He said tobacco is currently the second major cause of death in the world killing 5.4 million people every year. It is projected that the number of deaths will double in the next 20 years, resulting in global pandemic. Equally alarming is the fact that thousand of people who never smoke, become victims of second hand smoke, he added. It is pertinent to mention here that the government after withdrawing SRO on designated smoking areas, totally banned smoking at any public place, including offices, to protect the health of non-smokers. Prior to this SRO, all public and private offices were allowed to designate a separate place for smokers to smoke within office premises with adequate arrangements to protect the health of non-smokers. However, such permission was misused as it had become a practice that smokers were using places in offices other than designated areas while on other hand many offices failed to allocate designated places for the smokers. The Government has already declared some places of public work as no tobacco use places including hospitals, dispensaries, and other health care establishments, educational institutions, offices, conference rooms, all domestic flights, restaurants, buses, wagons, trains, indoor stadiums, gymnasiums, lounges of airports, waiting rooms at railway stations and waiting rooms at bus stations. When contacted an official of Tobacco Control Cell, Ministry of Health said that steps have been taken to check the law violators with the help of public and concerned departments. He said a strategic plan of action has been formed by the cell with focus on awareness programme for health officials, professionals, teachers, decision makers and administrative staff.