With over six lakh people succumbing to cancer every year and more than ten lakh new cases are reported in the country, the government on Tuesday said air pollution and unhealthy lifestyles are among the major risk factors for the disease.
It said that around seven per cent of all deaths in the country are due to various types of cancers.
“As reported by World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 1 million new cases are reported in India while about 6.8 lakh people die due to cancer in India,” Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha.
She said that as per WHO-NCD Country Profile 2014, “about seven per cent of all deaths are due to various cancers”. She also said that as according to WHO regional office in South East Asia, the region has 14 of the world’s top 20 polluted cities.
“However cancer is a multi factorial disease, the risk factors of which include ageing population, unhealthy lifestyles, use of tobacco and tobacco products, unhealthy diet and air pollution,” she said.
She said that the government has constituted a steering committee on air pollution and health. Prime Minister’s Council on Climate Change has also approved a new mission on health under National Action Plan on Climate Change, she said.
She said the Ministry of Petroleum has also initiated a scheme to provide free LPG connection to women belonging to BPL households under ‘Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojna’ to reduce air pollution.