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In current times, with rapid urbanization and globalization, the Indian population faces a looming threat of non-communicable or chronic diseases including heart disease, diabetes, cancer, stroke and chronic respiratory diseases. It is estimated that 25% of deaths in India are attributed to cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Several risk factors which predispose a person to chronic diseases are lifestyle related and can easily be modified by optimal levels of physical activity, healthy diets and abstinence from tobacco use. In today’s fast paced life, these protective factors are often neglected by youth and adults alike.

‘Delhi Active – Daily Active’ was launched on September 6, 2010 by the then Hon’ble Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Delhi, Prof. Kiran Walia and Hon’ble Member of Parliament, Sandeep Dikshit. The Health Minister was also the Chief Patron of the campaign. The event was attended by a large number of school students, youth health advocates and media persons.


Pictures Save Lives – Choose and Save Millions was a two-week, campaign-oriented exhibition organized by HRIDAY and the Public Health Foundation of India with support from the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CTFK) from November 14-27, 2010 at the India International Trade Fair. The exhibition was launched by youth health advocates from schools across Delhi on Children’s Day (November 14, 2010). The students participated in the activities planned as part of the exhibition. Strong and gory pictorial health warnings from 11 countries were displayed alongside the current as well as notified Indian pictorial health warnings to provide the masses an opportunity to see for themselves where Indian stands in terms of the health warnings.

The interactive exhibition organized to garner widespread public opinion and support in favour of timely implementation of health warnings was planned with the following components like Signature Campaign; Opinion Poll; Warning Wall; Social media optimization; Engaging with policymakers; Media engagement and coverage


Youth activists representing HRIDAY had undertaken a monitoring campaign in randomly selected restaurants across Delhi to gauge the level of implementation of the smoke- free rules. A total of 61 restaurants/ food joints, pub/bars and hookah bar were visited as part of the campaign. Interestingly, only 28% of the restaurants had ‘No- Smoking’ signage at entrance and at any conspicuous place inside the restaurant. Out of these, more than 60% didn’t comply with the signage specifications outlined in the law. 98% of the restaurants did not mention the name of the person to whom complaints regarding violations can be directed – which is an essential component of the rules notified under this provision of the law. During the monitoring campaign, in 10% of the restaurants, youth activists found people smoking in the non-smoking area. Out of the three bars/ pubs visited, only one of them had the ‘No- Smoking’ signage as per the specifications. The hookah bar visited didn’t have signage placed at any location.

The youth activists were dishearten to observe the low level of compliance by the restaurants.

Aman, a 2nd year physiotherapy student at the Amity University, reflected: “It is sad to see that such a large number of restaurants are not complying with the law inspite of a Supreme Court ruling.”

Just a day prior to the hearing in Supreme Court to stay the implementation of the rules banning smoking in public places across India, HRIDAY organised a field visit of youth from Amity International School in a city locality to see whether the restaurants in the area are complying with the law. Eight students of Std. X along with their teacher, Ms Anju V Kumar and two HRIDAY youth (SHAN) ambassadors visited seven restaurants/ food joints in a movie complex. Only two of the restaurants had the “No- Smoking” signage as specified in the law. None of the restaurants had mentioned the name of the person to whom complaints regarding violations can be made.