The district authorities in Rajkot have declared the five-day Janmashtami fair at the citys Race Course ground tobacco-free and have banned the sale and consumption any tobacco product there during the festival.
The fair,which began Wednesday and will continue till the weekend,is also hosting two volunteers dressed as Krishna and Radha distributing anti-tobacco leaflets,and about 40 others wearing t-shirts and caps with anti-tobacco messages imprinted on them.
With hundreds of thousands of people gathering for Vivekanand Janam Jayanti Lok Mela in Rajkot,we have decided to make the fair tobacco-free. This will be a step towards making the district of Rajkot tobacco-free, Deputy Collector G M Dixit,who is in charge of the mela,was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI),a semi-government body partnering with the administration for the effort.
The tobacco-free Janmashtami is part of a wider initiative called STEPS (Strengthening of tobacco control efforts through innovative partnerships and strategies),which is being implemented by the state government and PHFI in six districts.