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World No Tobacco Day: Sudarsan Pattnaik creates sand art, sends out message to kick the butt

Puri (Odisha) [India], May 31 (ANI): To commemorate 'World No Tobacco Day, well-known sand artist Sudarsan Pattnaik created a beautiful sand art giving the message of quitting tobacco at the Puri beach.

The theme for this year's World No Tobacco Day is 'We need food, not tobacco'.

World No Tobacco Day is celebrated on May 31 every year to raise awareness about the harms associated with the consumption of tobacco.

This year's theme aims to raise awareness about alternative crop production and marketing opportunities for tobacco farmers and encourage them to grow sustainable and nutritious crops.

Tobacco cultivation contributes to increased food insecurity worldwide, said Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia.

Around 3.5 million hectares of land are converted for tobacco growing each year globally.

In Southeast Asia Region, India leads in acres of land under cultivation and tobacco production, followed by Indonesia. Tobacco is also grown in Bangladesh, DPR Korea, Thailand, Myanmar, and Sri Lanka.

Nine of the 10 largest tobacco cultivators are low- and middle-income countries and four of these are defined as low-income food-deficit countries. (ANI)