Problem and prospects smoke-free public place and public transport: Case of Bangladesh Railways - train and rail stations
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Madar Baksh-Saleh Foundation, Dhaka, Bangladesh
National Tobacco Control Cell, Health Services Division, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Publication date: 2021-09-02
Corresponding author
Sazia Binte B. Saleh   

Madar Baksh-Saleh Foundation, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A23
Train is most common, cost-effective, comfortable and environment-friendly public transport that carry more than 70 million annual trips. GATS 2017 found that 44% adults (15+ years) were exposed to tobacco smoke in public transports in Bangladesh. The Railway Act 1890 banned smoking in the train and rail staff are responsible to ensure enforcement of this law. Smoking is banned in various public places (such as rail station) and public transports (such as train) by the Smoking and Tobacco Products Uses (Control) Act. This law included first class officers of Bangladesh Railway as authorized officers. Rail authority is also responsible to display no-smoking signage in the train and stations.

Identify gaps and challenges of the enforcement of railways act and tobacco control law that banned smoking in train and stations

15 key informant interviews were taken among railway staff from top-level management to filed level staff. 2 top level officials from Ministry of Rail was also interviewed those who have magistracy power and operate mobile courts against law violation on spot.

First class officers of Railway are not aware about their roles for the tobacco control law. None of them are informed about this law from top-level management and this law is not included in their training manual. Top-level management is also not much informed about this law. They try to keep smoke-free train and stations as it is included in the Railways Act. Selling tobacco products in station and train is banned by rail guideline itself.

To ensure smoke-free environment in the train and stations, concerned government agency (such as National Tobacco Control Cell, Health Services Division, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare) should collaborate with Bangladesh Railways to include tobacco control law in the training manual and stop selling of tobacco products in train and stations.

Effective tobacco control measures in Bangladesh require a whole-of-government approach
M. Mofizul Islam
Policy Design and Practice
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