RAWALPINDI - Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH), President Major General ® Masood ur Rehman Kiayani has hailed the government’s decision to impose tax on tobacco, saying this will go a long way to curtail tobacco use and positively impact public health.

Addressing a press conference, he said a strict legislation was also needed in this regard as despite a ban on smoking in public health facilities, colleges, parks and hospital, the rule was not being implemented.

He said the association was working from last 35 years to create awareness among the citizen about the effects of smoking on human health. Tobacco was the leading cause of health diseases and stricter measures must be adopted to eliminate its consumption in the country, he added. Taxes on tobacco products was one of the most effective ways of cutting down consumption; however, Pakistan had witnessed an unfortunate series of events in the form of resistance from the powerful tobacco industry which has always vehemently lobbied against the tobacco law introduction and implementation in the country. Among others, PANAH Technical Advisor, Dr, Wajid Ali, Dr. Abdul Qayyum Awan Vice President and General Secretary Sana Ullah Guman were also present on the occasion.