Tobacco kills over one million adults in a high-burden country like India each year. Despite a comprehensive tobacco control law – the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA), 2003, implementation remains varied across Indian states due to several contextual factors. The Anushthana team members (Dr. Pragati Hebbar, Vivek Dsouza, Praveen Rao S, and Kumaran P) of the Chronic Conditions and Public Policies cluster at IPH visited three Indian states i.e. West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh, and Kerala during the months of November and December 2021. The objective of the field visit was to understand local contexts and on-ground implementation successes and challenges in the field of tobacco control. The team undertook field observations in three districts of each state focussing on the implementation of COTPA sections 4, 5, 6, and 7. Simultaneously, the team met relevant stakeholders to understand their views on tobacco control policy implementation.
To aid the data collection, the team worked with Julee Jerang (IPH field consultant in Arunachal Pradesh) and MANT (a non-profit public health organisation in West Bengal). The field visit is part of a five-year research fellowship awarded to Dr. Pragati Hebbar and is funded by the DBT/Wellcome Trust India Alliance.