Cigarettes and hookah are luring Indian women more into the smoking habit and two recent surveys from India clearly show women smokers in India are growing in alarming numbers especially in certain professions such as the BPO and the media.
Two independent surveys showed 8% of women in BPO centers smoked and in media organizations the percentage of women smokers varied from 5 to 35 % . These figures are large considering the national average of 1.5 women smokers in India.
Dr. Gauravi Mishra led a team from the Tata Memorial Hospital, studying the smoking habits of 646 BPO employees from four work centers over a period of 18 months. Dr. Ravikant Mishra from an NGO, 'Doctors for You' studied 1500 media persons from the print, electronic and ad companies. Researchers have opined that there has been a significant increase in women smokers since 2007.
Call it a mistaken sense of women's emancipation, flaunting a fashion, buckling under stress or just bowing down to peer pressure, more Indian women are increasingly throwing caution to the winds and taking to tobacco use, especially smoking.