(Rabbiya Gaba, Lahore)
NO SMOKING. SMOKING KILLS. We read this tag line almost everywhere whether it be offices, airplanes, restaurants, etc. what we don't do is that we skip pondering over this statement. What we don't realise is that by smoking, we don't just deteriorate our own health but also of the passive smokers- that is the people who inhale the cigarette smoke. Smoking, for many of us becomes a substitute for our early habit of following the whims of the moment; it becomes a legitimate excuse for interrupting work and snatching a moment of pleasure. "You sometimes get tired of working intensely," said an accountant whom we interviewed, "and if you sit back for the length of a cigarette, you feel much fresher afterwards. It's a peculiar thing, but I wouldn't think of just sitting back without a cigarette. I guess a cigarette somehow gives me a good excuse." Again One smoker explained: "I nearly always smoke a cigarette before going to bed. That finishes the day. I usually turn the light out after I have smoked the last cigarette, and then turn over to sleep." Frequently, our respondents remarked that smoking cigarettes is like being with a friend. Said one, "When I lean back and light my cigarette and see the glow in the dark, I am not alone anymore...." In one sense, a cigarette seems to be something alive.
Some just smoke to relax their nerves either to forget their painful memories or just to gain pleasure.
Smoking is primarily a health threat for men. Nearly half of all men smoked in the 1970s and 1980s, whereas only 5 percent of women smoked. Twenty-five percent of all adults were estimated to be smokers in 1985, with a marked increase among women (who still generally smoke only at home). The national airline, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), instituted a no-smoking policy on all its domestic flights in the late 1980s. In an unusual departure from global trends, PIA reversed this policy in mid1992, claiming...
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