Recently, the fourth round of Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS-4) was released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW).

Important points:

  • GYTS-4 was conducted in 2019 by the International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS) under the MoHFW.
  • IIPS, Mumbai, formerly known as the Demographic Training and Research Centre (DTRC) till 1970, was established in July 1956 under the joint sponsorship of Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, the Government of India and the United Nations.
  • It serves as a regional centre for Training and Research in Population Studies for the the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) region.
  • The survey was designed to produce national estimates of tobacco use among school going children aged 13-15 years at the state level and Union Territory (UT) by sex, location of school (rural-urban), and management of school (public-private).
  • The first three rounds of GYTS were conducted in 2003, 2006 and 2009.
  • A total of 97,302 students from 987 schools participated in the survey.


To provide information on tobacco use, cessation, second-hand smoke, access and availability, exposure to anti-tobacco information, awareness and receptivity to tobacco marketing, knowledge, and attitudes.

Major Findings:

  • There has been a 42% decline in tobacco use among 13-15 year-old school going children in the last decade.
  • Nearly one-fifth of the students aged 13-15 used any form of the tobacco product (smoking, smokeless, and any other form) in their life.
  • Use of any form of tobacco was higher among boys. Prevalence of tobacco use among boys was 9.6% and among girls was 7.4%.
  • Tobacco use among school going children was highest in Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram and lowest in Himachal Pradesh and Karnataka.
  • 38% of cigarettes, 47% of bidi smokers and 52% of smokeless tobacco users initiated the use before their tenth birthday.
  • The median age of initiation to cigarette and bidi-smoking, and smokeless tobacco use were 11.5 years, 10.5 years and 9.9 years respectively.
  • 52% of students noticed anti-tobacco messages in the mass media and 18% of students noticed tobacco advertisements or promotions when visiting points of sale.
  • 85% of school heads were aware of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA), 2003 and 83% of schools were aware of the policy to display ‘tobacco-free school’ boards.

Tobacco Control in India:

  1. COTPA, 2003
  2. Promulgation of the Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes Ordinance, 2019
  3. National Tobacco Quitline Services (NTQLS)
  4. mCessation Programme


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