Thiruvananthapuram: The Voice of Tobacco Victims (VoTV), a unique campaign which will give a collective space and voice to tobacco victims will be launched here Tuesday.
With this, Kerala will be one among five Indian states to have a dedicated VoTV state chapter.
More than one-fifth of the state adult population above 15 years use tobacco in some or the other form. Nearly 20,000 die from tobacco-induced cancers in Kerala every year.
Paul Sebastian, director, Regional Cancer Centre (RCC) is the president of the VoTV Kerala state chapter.
In this state chapter, senior doctors will come together to bring awareness about harmful effects of tobacco and save lives of the people in the state.
Tobacco victims will share their experiences on how its usage has affected them and their families. They will act as the public face for tobacco control movement and advocate for change through proactive action.
Patients suffering from cancer and other fatal diseases due to tobacco usage are members of this campaign. The message, they convey through the VoTV is "this is what tobacco did to us, we want to save others".
The VoTV is a brainchild of renowned head and neck surgeon Pankaj Chaturvedi of Mumbai's Tata Memorial Centre.