Two Indian cities announced initiatives under the Partnership for Healthy Cities in recent days: Ahmedabad on Saturday and Bengaluru on Monday.
Ahmedabad Mayor Gautam Shah broke the news himself at an event that also drew his city’s medical officer. As Shah explained, under Ahmedabad’s Partnership initiative the city will assess the prevalence of noncommunicable disease (NCD) risk factors throughout the city. An action plan will be developed to address the risk factors identified.
Two days later and almost 1,000 miles to the south, Bengaluru’s announcement of its own Partnership initiative—a smoke-free city—also went off without a hitch.
Honorable Minister of Development and Town Planning Shri KJ George referred to Bengaluru’s involvement in the Partnership for Healthy Cities with evident pride, thanking Bloomberg Philanthropies for its support.
“Becoming a smoke-free city will protect the health of a large number of people,” he told a press conference.
Bengaluru’s initiative combines strong enforcement of existing smoke-free laws with a public education campaign about the dangers of second-hand smoke and will encourage the public to report violations through a government portal. Participants at Monday’s event watched a dramatic video featuring a victim of second-hand smoke and a renowned oncologist describing how the Partnership initiative will help protect the health of Bengaluru’s population.
The Partnership for Healthy Cities is a prestigious global network of cities committed to saving lives by preventing NCDs and injuries. It’s led by World Health Organization Global Ambassador for NCDs Michael Bloomberg, with implementing partner Vital Strategies.
The Indian city of Mumbai is also part of the Partnership and will also work to fight NCDs and injuries.