World No Tobacco Day- 31st May 2021

Theme: Commit to Quit

1. Social Media Campaign- Own Your Power 

The Department of Mental Health Education, began a Campaign on social media called “Own  Your Power-I am the champion of my story”. The campaign called forward the champions who had successfully committed to Quit to share their stories with Us. Their stories were inspiration for those contemplating to Quit and also the ones who needed motivation. Own your Power was a one month long successful campaign.  

The campaign received an overwhelming response from all over the country. Their touching stories along with their undying resilience to quit tobacco definitely must have inspired a lot of people. The stories were posted on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter on a daily basis,  which were also reposted by a lot of people. 

2. Prof Pratima Murthy speaks on “Commit to Quit”

Dr. Pratima Murthy. Professor and Head, Department of Psychiatry shared her views on the theme for the Day “Commit to Quit”. She reminded people of the choices they can make regarding smoking and quitting. She emphasized on the ill effects of tobacco and the consumption of 7000 chemicals in it.  

Prof Murthy, spoke about the advantages of quitting and urged the audience to commit to quit. 

3. Media Cell: Making it to the Newspapers

Various Newspapers, both Local and National, published about NIMHANS and various ways through which Health care workers reached out to the public making them aware about tobacco and its harmful effects. A lot of emphasis was placed on measures to Quit tobacco and where they could get help from. The campaign was highlighted by Times of India stating its success.

Valedictory Ceremony- 29th JUNE 2021

On 29th June 2021, the valedictory ceremony took place to mark the end of month long World  No Tobacco Day observation. The following events were a part of the ceremony:  

1. Panel Discussion: A panel discussion was held in collaboration with Jyoti Niwas College,  Autonomous, Bengaluru on the occasion of World No tobacco day and International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit trafficking 2021, with the theme: Commit to Quit: Sharing facts and saving lives. Dr Arun Kandasamy, Dr. Prashanti Nattala and Dr. Shreedevi AU  from NIMHANS and Ms. Devika M and Ms. Noora Haris from Jyoti Niwas College were chairing as panelist.  

Dr. Latha K, from the Department of Mental Health Education, was moderating the session. The panelist answered questions of the audience regarding Tobacco use, its harmful effects and alike questions.  

2. Following the Panel discussion, the invocation by Ms. Asha from the Department of  Psychiatric Social Work took place. 

3. The Welcome Address to the audience was given by Dr. Y. C Janardhan Reddy Professor and Head, Department of Psychiatry NIMHANS where he highlighted the ill effects of smoking and the importance to Quit due to Covid-19 as the mortality rates are increasing due to increased lung infection. He pointed out the plathora of Mateiral by WHO when they held yearlong awareness about World No Tobacco Day, including 100 reasons to  Quit. Dr. Y. C Janardhan welcomed the Dr. Pratima Murthy, Director NIMHANS and the  Chief Guest Dr. Kiran, Joint Director (Medical) and State Member Secretary, State  Tobacco Control Cell, Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Services, Bangalore.  This was followed by Presidential address by Pratima Murthy, Director NIMHANS who emphaised the importance of World No Tobacco Day and the need to Quit. She congratulated the Department of Mental Health Education, NTQL team and Department of Psychiatric Social Work for hosting the one-month long awareness campaign. She also empahsied on the preventive risk factors, along with non-communicable diseases it causes along with other conditions like TB and disabilities. Dr. Pratima Murthy reminded the audience of the theme by WHO- Commit to Quit, how we must encourage people who smoke to quit and support them in their decisions. And while looking at this we must also look at prevention from beginning to smoke. She concluded it by congratulating Jyoti  Niwas College and NIMHANS departments for taking this endeavor.  

4. The department of Mental Health Education in collaboration with the department of  Psychiatric Social Work and NTQL team curated and developed some very creative  Information, Education and Communication materials. These educational brochures and posters were released by Dr. Pratima Murthy, Dr. Shankarnaryan Rao, Dr. Y. C  Janardhan Reddy and Dr. Meena K. S.  

5. This was followed by a presentation by Mr. Subhash Counselor, NTQL. The Videos developed by the counselors, celebrities and experts were released. Mr.. Subhash and several other experts were called to talk on radio shows on AIR FM. Various Newspapers too covered and published the stories regarding the campaign. The one-month long campaign held by Department of Mental Health Education; “Own your Power: I am the champion of my story”, Where people who successfully quit smoking shared their real-life stories which were displayed on different social media platforms. Mr. Subhash then invited Mr. Vasanthkumar Mysoremath to share his story of how he quit. The 

presentation ended with thanking everyone for their endless support in success of this one-month long campaign.  

6. This was shortly followed by a speech by the esteemed guest, Dr. Kiran Joint Director  (Medical) and State Member Secretary, State Tobacco Control Cell, Directorate of Health and Family Welfare Services, Bangalore. He emphasized the state’s role in restricting the sale of tobacco, as well as the lockdown’s role in the sale of tobacco has come down. He mentioned the need to implement these programmes in Bangalore Colleges. Dr, Kiran also talked about the stress levels and company that drives a person to smoke, among which are many doctors. Medical Colleges, have high rates of addiction too. He thanked  NIMHANS for their initiative and mentioned that loose cigarettes and E-cigarettes are now banned in Karnataka.  

7. The event was concluded by the vote of thanks by Dr. B. S. Shankaranarayana Rao, The Registrar of NIMHANS, who expressed his gratitude towards the guests for gracing the event with their presence and also appreciated the efforts of all the 3 departments who were the key organizers of this successful event. 

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