TEACHERS and students smoking is a common sight on university campuses. Being responsible citizens, it is every student’s responsibility to keep our universities tobacco-free. But I have seen students smoking behind university canteens. They not only harm their own health, but also spoil the academic environment. Disappointingly, teachers are equally involved in smoking. Some of them even smoke in classrooms in the presence of the students, which is not only unethical, but also harmful to the students.
Passive smoking can increase the risk of nasal sinus cancer, throat cancer, larynx cancer, breast cancer, long- and short-term respiratory symptoms and many other diseases among people who do not smoke. Instead of improving the classroom environment for better learning, such teachers are making it worse. These teachers and students also indulge in abusive language and dampen the morale of other students and spread negativity.
According to the World Health Organisation, tobacco kills more than eight million people each year, including 1.2 million non-smokers who are unfortunately exposed to second-hand smoke.
The university administrations must take action against all those students and teachers who are involved in smoking, and must ensure an effective learning environment on all the campuses.
Published in Dawn, September 7th, 2021