According to The Lancet, non-communicable diseases (NCDs), mainly heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancers, and chronic respiratory disease, are responsible for two out of every three deaths worldwide and the toll is rising. A landmark global alliance between leading scientists and four of the world's largest NGOs brings together evidence from a 5-year collaboration with almost 100 of the world's best NCD experts and proposes a short-list of five priority interventions to tackle the increasing global crisis. Reducing tobacco and salt use, improving diets and physical activity, reducing hazardous alcohol intake, and achieving universal access to essential drugs and technologies have been chosen for their health effects, cost-effectiveness, low costs of implementation, and political and financial feasibility. 
Just 5 months ahead of the UN High-Level Meeting (HLM) on NCDs, only the second of its kind to focus on a global disease issue and with the potential to stimulate action globally as well as nationally, The Lancet NCD Action Group and the NCD Alliance launch a clear set of commitments in The Lancet that they would like to see from the meeting.
"The most important outcome of the UN HLM on NCDs will be sustained and strong high-level political support for a framework of specific commitments to tackle the NCD crisis as part of a costed national health plan", explain the authors. The aim is to reduce NCD death rates by 2% per year which will avert an estimated 36 million deaths over 10 years.
Despite numerous national and international policies, strategies, and plans to tackle NCDs progress has been slow—partly, say the authors, because of the "pressing nature" of other global health issues.
In the lead up to the UN meeting, the authors call on heads of state and governments to commit to a coordinated set of feasible actions and interventions for which specific and timed targets and indicators can be developed, and against which progress can be measured.
The top priority must be to reduce tobacco use followed by lowering salt intake, say the authors. Key to the success of this intervention will be the accelerated implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) to achieve the proposed goal, "a world essentially free from tobacco by 2040", where less than 5% of the population uses tobacco; achieving this goal would prevent at least 5.5 million premature deaths over 10 years.
By 2025, they would like to see salt intake reduced to less than 5 g per person. They point out that reducing global salt consumption by just 15% through mass-media campaigns and reformulation of processed foods and salt substitution could prevent an estimated 8.5 million deaths in just 10 years.
Importantly, the costs of these interventions will be small, say the authors. The yearly cost to implement tobacco control and salt reduction will be less than US 50 cents per person per year in countries like India and China. The total package of priority interventions will require a new global commitment of about $9 billion per year.
Key to the immediate delivery of these interventions is a set of priority actions—securing broad political leadership at the highest levels nationally and internationally, support for strengthening health systems (with a strong focus on primary care), building international cooperation and consensus for priority interventions (particularly primary prevention), and establishing independent monitoring systems and accountability mechanisms for assessing progress. (CNS)
Bobby Ramakant – CNS
 (The author is a World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General’s WNTD Awardee 2008 and writes extensively on health and development through Citizen News Service (CNS). Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., website:

(CNS): Since times immemorial, the human race has sought health, happiness and wealth —not necessarily in that order. Wars have been fought and lives have been lost due to the overwhelming desire of possessing them. These three basic ingredients are thought to be essential for a meaningful life. Ironically, in our crazy race for securing 'happiness and health', we at times are actually moving away from it. Life has become so hectic and busy that it is taking its toll on our health and wellbeing. More and more people seem to be suffering from a host of health related problems, courtesy different types of stresses of everyday life, which are more often self created. 

The WHO slogan for World Health Day,2011 (which is on 7th April) is Combat drug resistance - no action today, no cure tomorrow. This is so very true, not only for our physical health, but also for our emotional well being. If we become resistant to love and compassion today, there will be no cure from negative thoughts tomorrow. It seems ridiculous, but alas! It is true that people lose their health to make money and lose their money to restore their health. By thinking seriously about the future, they forget about the present, such that they live neither for the present nor for the future. They live as if they will never die and they die as if they had never lived.

Even doctors and scientists agree that a positive and happy attitude towards life goes a long way in curing and healing physical/mental ailments. 

In Bhutan gross national happiness has been the yardstick to measure the country’s prosperity since 1970. But recently, even the British Prime Minister David Cameron has joined the bandwagon, saying that, "It's time we admitted that there's more to life than money and it's time we focused not just on GDP but on GWB – general well-being. Well-being can't be measured by money or traded in markets."

"GDP is crumbling as a target – it is already out of date," says Andrew Oswald, professor of economics and behavioural science at the University of Warwick. Oswald was one of the first economists in the country to research what he labels "emotional prosperity."

There is a growing body of research which feels that happiness is mandatory to preserve good health. Normally public health research focuses on the study of disease to combat ill health. But way back in 1938, Dr Dr Arlie Bock, the director of the then Department of Hygiene at Harvard University, decided to focus this research on young healthy men. "All admit that the sick need care, but very few apparently have thought it necessary to make a systematic inquiry as to how people keep well and do well," he said. The Grant Study of Adult Development, initiated by Dr Bock, is the world's longest-running study of adult life, and provides some interesting insights into mental and physical well-being. Under this study researchers have been studying men in the USA, following them from adolescence to retirement, with the aim to discover what it takes to live well. 

George Vaillant, (pronounced valiant) the director of this Harvard study, points to the strength of evidence provided by it. "The power of the Grant study was that it had 73 years of real behaviour – not just self-reporting – with which to judge its notions of a rewarding life."

By the time the Grant Study men had entered retirement, researchers had identified seven major factors that predict healthy aging, both physically and psychologically: Employing mature coping skills (like stoicism and altruism), was one of them. The others were education, a good marriage, not smoking, not abusing alcohol, some exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight.

Vaillant's interest lies in the power of relationships, and in finding a correlation between healthy aging and human happiness. According to him, "Warm, intimate relationships are the most important prologue to a good life. It is social aptitude, not intellectual brilliance or parental social class, that leads to successful aging."

"Life ain't easy," he points out. "Terrible things happen to everyone. You have to keep your sense of humor, give something of yourself to others, make friends who are younger than you, learn new things, and have fun."

"Understanding the links between well-being and health is an important aspect of the work of WHO," says Somnath Chatterji,, a scientist in the Health Statistics and Informatics department of the World Health Organization. "This will help develop policies for promoting health in ageing populations, which are facing increasing chronic illnesses."

Ed Diener, a professor of psychology at the University of Illinois, in the USA, who has studied the effect of happiness (or subjective well-being) for 30 years, says, "There are many types of data all pointing to the fact that happiness leads to health and a longer life, of course, among many other factors."

Scientific research apart, we are all aware that happiness of the mind has a direct impact on our mental and physical well being. We see this all around us. Jealousy, anger, intolerance, and other negative feelings are some of the poisons which can undo the curative actions of the best of medicines and make us perpetually unhealthy. How often do we crib about a colleague/acquaintance who is always complaining about others and about life in general? On the other hand we also recall proudly about those who face life’s challenges with a smile. They may be medically under a cloud, but spread sunshine around them, and in the process mitigate their own physical woes. There are many empowering stories of ordinary men and women who got a control over debilitating sickness through sheer will power and a happy disposition. My mother is one of them. Despite being crippled by arthritis, she leads a full life at the age of 82 years, spreading joy and happiness in the life of all those who come in contact with her, unmindful of her constant intense pain.

So begin this World Health Day with a morning prayer of thanksgiving to God; eat healthy food during the day, topping it up with contentment and cheerfulness; go for an evening walk; find some time to stand and wait till her mouth can, enrich that smile her eyes began (a la W H Davies); and, above all, make at least one person smile.

Repeat this every day, and you have the perfect recipe for a happy-well rather than sad-sick existence.

Respect life with all its ups and downs, and live it to the fullest. 

Shobha Shukla - CNS

(The author is the Editor of Citizen News Service (CNS) and also serves as the Director of CNS Diabetes Media Initiative (CNS-DMI).She is a J2J Fellow of National Press Foundation (NPF) USA. She has worked earlier with State Planning Institute, UP. Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., website:

“Udaan” or in English “The Flight” may be of many kinds. The first synonyms of it’s comes to my mind is “a desire to fly” or in hindi you can say “asha mann ki udaan ki” and I am sure almost everyone of us had got this desire secretly kept in our hearts safely. So does our character Chintu has. Nine year old Chintu is in 5th standard of Xaviers Secondary School of Ayodhya (UP) yes! The disputed site, this is exactly what your mind may be thinking. Don’t blame yourself, it may be the psychological reasoning of yours to always pick up the wrong reason of anything or perhaps you can blame our opportunistic wicked and I will say the coward Politians who had created all this fuss around for just to have meager political gain.  Let’s come back to our Chintu, like others he has also got an ambitious udaan in his little heart in  the form of becoming a doctor just like his father but he doesn’t kept it secret like many of us instead he proudly shares it to everyone.  That’s why he always introduces himself to others as Dr Chintu.

One day while coming back from school Chintu had a chat with his class mates Sunil, Vishal and Javed :-

Sunil:- Today It was a great fun na!  Having two games periods. (With a smiling face)

Javed:- Ya! Say thanks to Sheila maam’s illness yaar. (Giving a low five to Sunil)

Sunil:- Rightly said that, I wish her illness continues tomorrow so that we again get her period to have fun. (By taking low five given by Sunil and smiles)

Javed:- well! Even though she may be ill tomorrow but we can’t play. (With sadness)

Chintu & Others: - why?

 Javed:- Arrey! Tommorow is 30 Sep The verdict day!

Chintu :-                 Verdict day? What verdict? (Anxiously)

Javed & Others:-     you don’t know??? (Surprisingly)

Chintu:- No! You guys know? (Anxiously)

Sunil :- hey Vishal you say. (Looking at Vishal)

Vishal:- Why I?  No! you say! (Looking back to Sunil)

Javed:- OK OK don’t fight I am saying (looking onto Chintu). Look the truth is, we all don’t knew exactly what it is, but it seems  tomorrow the uncles will fight each other.

Chintu :- Why???

Javed:-  That I don’t know. (Looking to his friends)

At this Chintu too looks onto his friends with a hope to get the reason but everybody negatively nods their head.

Chintu:- So you people are not coming School tomorrow?

All his Friends:- Hopefully No!

 By the time Chintu is about to reach his home, so he gives a final bi to his friends.

Chintu:- Bi Guys! (By waving his hands to his friends)

Javed:- Bi Chintu !

Chintu:- Hey idiot forgot! Say Dr. Chintu.

Javed:- oops sorry! Bi Dr. Chintu.

Dr. Chintu:-  Bi (smiles and enters in home)

Dr. Chintu on reaching home had a small chat with his mother.

Dr. Chintu:- Mom! Is tomorrow a verdict day? (By throwing his bag on the dining table)

Mom:- Na beta! Who told you? (Gazing at Chintu for the act)

Dr. Chintu:- Is this true that tomorrow uncles will fight each other?

Mom:- No! Who told you all these nonsense? Go and have your homework done. (Angrily)

Little Dr. Chintu on this sadly moves to his room by picking his bag from the dining table.

Mom:- Oh god! Today’s children…..really (to herself)

Next day Dr. Chintu wakes up early, breaks his piggy bank, took all the cash, dressed in school uniform with a long red tilak on his fore head made from Mom’s Sindoor box and ran for school. He also didn’t forget to take his sword (toy) with him once gifted by his father on his 9th birthday. With the money, he hired a rickshaw puller for reaching school as it was very early to catch the school bus. On the way:-

Rickshaw puller:- Baba! Are you sure that your school will be open today? (By paddling his Rickshaw)

Dr. Chintu:- Yes! But you take me to the place where the uncles will fight today? (Anxiously looking around)

Rickshaw puller:- why? (Surprisingly)

Dr. Chintu:- Quick uncle! I had to deliver a message. (still anxiously looking around)

Rickshaw puller:- Whose message?

By the time Chintu was able to see a crowd gathered in front of an old structure with slogans and placards written.





Dr. Chintu:- Message of Bharat Mata. (Quickly gets down and hands over the money to the rickshaw puller and ran into the crowd)

Rickshaw puller:- Listen son! Come back! I will drop you to the School. (Shouts with hope)

Dr. Chintu listens to nobody but to himself, he straight away enters into the crowd with his sword raising and:-

Dr. Chintu:- Step aside…… listen to me……I had a message…….(shouts regularly)

At this few people drag his hand and push him out of the crowd and one of them:-

The Man:- hey kid go away! (Angrily)

On this Dr. Chintu became angry and again tries to enter:-

Dr. Chintu:- Step aside…… listen to me……I had a message…….(shouts regularly)

Another Man:- Hey! Why you are here? Go to your school (drag and pushes him away from the crowd)

At this our Dr. saab became very frustrated and angry:-

Dr. Chintu :- Listen to my message …. I want to make sacrifice (raising his sword Shouts loudly in the middle of the crowd)

On this the crowd suddenly stops and silently all eyes on our Dr. Chintu. Dr. Chintu breathing fast and grunts, then suddenly a man from the crowd:-

The Man:-  Hey boy! (Angrily)

Dr. Chintu :- Listen to my message else I will sacrifice myself…. I want to sacrifice myself (this time silently as everyone is listening to him)

At this one of the members stops the man by raising his hand and comes near to our Dr.Saab

The Man:- Tell us Who are you  and whose message you want to deliver us? (Softly)

Dr. Chintu:- I am Dr. Chintu (Politely)

On listening this, the man and his colleagues had a rare smile on their face but it didn’t last long. So our Dr. Saab continues:-

Dr. Chintu:- And I wanted to deliver a message of Bharat Maa.

At this the angry mob now had a surprising face.

The Man:- Bharat maa…. Where did you meet her and what did she say? (Surprisingly and anxiously)

Dr. Chintu:- (continues) I don’t know the location but she appears last night when I was in bed. First of all I didn’t recognize her. I saw a woman weeping under a banyan tree, when I went to her I saw her with a bare head, a torn saree with many stitches and also with many scars and wounds on her body.

On listening this, the angry mob sits calmly on the ground and interestingly listens further to Dr. Chintu.

 Now we can show the dream on the next part of the stage with having the character Bharat Mata and Dr. Chintu .

Dr. Chintu:- Who are you ? (Approaching her)

Bharat Maa:- you don’t know me son… ?(Surprisingly) Yes! How could you recognize this helpless maa. (Stops weeping)

Dr. Chintu:- (thinks for a while) Bharat maa…(and quickly gets down and touches  her feet)

Bharat Maa:- Yes!  21st century’s helpless Bharat maa (holds up Dr. Chintu)

Dr. Chintu:- Maa! What happened to you and where is your crown? (Pointing to the bare head)

Bharat Maa:- The Crown! (Waits for a while) Yes, half was stolen and the remaining broken part is under mortgage.

Dr. Chintu:- what about the scars? (Looking on the wounds and scars all over the body)      

Bharat Maa:- This one is due to burn on 2001(showing her right hand) and this is of 1971 (showing the scars in her left hand) This is of 1992 (stops and holds her breast with having a pain)

Dr. Chintu:- What happened Maa? (Tensed)

Bharat Maa:- Nothing son! For past few weeks I had a severe pain here. (Frees her hand from the breast and smiles on looking to Dr. Chintu and continues) Enough of me tell me who are you and what is your name?

Dr. Chintu:- I am a son of yours and my name is Dr. Chintu. (Proudly introduces)      

Bharat Maa:- Dr. Chintu….?

Dr. Chintu:- Yes! I want to become a Doctor.

Bharat Maa:- (smiles and  suddenly starts weeping )

Dr. Chintu:- What happened maa? Please calm down.      

Bharat Maa:-  Nothing Son (stops weeping and continues) Suddenly I remembered my other great sons.

Dr. Chintu:- Who? (Anxiously)      

Bharat Maa:- (smiles and continues) There was many, One  … people say him mahatma…

Dr. Chintu:- (Quickly interrupts) Mohan Das Karamchand Gandhi, I had read about him (smiling and with sparking eyes)

Bharat Maa:- Yes (smiles) Then you also read about Netaji?

Dr. Chintu:- Ya! Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.

Bharat Maa:- (smiles and continues) Chandrashekar Azad, Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad, Bhagat Singh, Jawahar lal, Lal bahadur, Vir sawarkar, Sardar patel……..

Dr. Chintu:- And Dr. Chintu….. (Suddenly interrupts with a smiling face)

Bharat Maa:- (smiles)

Dr. Chintu:- (continues) I also wanted to be a freedom fighter like them but today you don’t need them as  all the British are gone(with sadness)

Bharat Maa:- Who says I don’t need them today? I need them now the most. Whenever I was in trouble my courageous and loving sons valued their precious life for saving me. They had given their lives for protecting me and my dignity. But tomorrow…..(suddenly stops)

Dr. Chintu:- What will happen tomorrow?(waits a while and continues) Aren’t you mean the verdict day that javed was talking about, like the uncles will fight……..(anxiousness on his face)

Bharat Maa:- Yes! once again tomorrow my dignity and respect is in danger. Now when almost the world is here for games my sons will fight each other for nothing but for showing their high nose. Is there no true son of mine left, this time who can save me from this humiliation and insult in front of the whole world? Will my dignity and respect once again get torn and destroyed in ashes tomorrow? Who will stop them (weeps and looks at Dr. Chintu with pain and anguish)

Dr. Chintu:- I will stop them? (With energy in his thin voice)

Bharat Maa:- (smiles and stops weeping) You? Surely you will one day my son but not this time. You are a kid now Dr. Chintu.(by brushing his hair with her hand)

Dr. Chintu:- Don’t say Dr. Chintu anymore Maa.(with sadness)

Bharat Maa:- Why? (Surprisingly)

Dr. Chintu:- Today I had decided to become a teacher like my mother?

Bharat Maa:- why son? (Anxiously)

Dr. Chintu:-  So that I can help to build a new India which will be more powerful physically as well as mentally too so that you will never ever have to face this type of agony and humiliation anymore. I need your blessing maa.(gets down and touches her feet)

On this a tearful (this time of happiness) mother sees off her young child, placing a tilak on his forehead with her blood which is coming out of one of the wounds. The reason I said young child to Dr. Chintu Oh! Sorry now Sir Chintu is that he may be a child in built but is young too young with his brave mighty heart. Now focusing on the other part of the stage the angry mob by listening to these had a tearful face and started hugging each other. Sir Chintu seeing this became very happy and tears away the placards fallen on the ground writhen:-






Sir Chintu now happily shows these torn placards to our audiences.

Sir Chintu:- JAI HIND…….. JAI HIND………. JAI HIND………. (Shouts loudly)

The mob also repeats this loudly with holding each other’s hand covering the entire stage in a line, Sir Chintu will be in front and in the middle of them. Bharat Mata will be standing with a smiling face behind them on a height so that the audience can watch her clearly.


Gulshen Ali                                                                                                                                                                                         
Film writer aspirant written 30+ stories
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TB drug resistance can be overcome with a comprehensive, multi-pronged strategy: The Union
Some 440,000 cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) are identified each year, causing at least 150,000 deaths from a disease that should be curable. Extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB), which has an even higher fatality rate, has now been reported in 69 countries. “Drug-resistant TB is the end result of a number of different failures, each of which, on its own, is solvable with existing tools. To address all of the issues and stop the spread of this disease requires a comprehensive, multi-pronged strategy, such as The Union has developed”, says Dr Nils E Billo, Executive Director of the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (The Union).
The rising incidence of antimicrobial resistance will be the focus of this year’s World Health Day, marked on Thursday, 7 April. The World Health Organization selected this theme to highlight the fact that many essential medicines are at risk of losing their effectiveness, due to inappropriate use, poor monitoring and other practices that jeopardise global advances against infectious disease. Tuberculosis is among the most dangerous diseases affected by this trend, according to The Union, which supports the WHO’s emphasis on the problem.
When TB is misdiagnosed or the treatment is poorly managed, the doors open to drug resistance. Consequently training for people at every level of the health care system is central to The Union’s approach. Each year courses are offered in high TB burden areas of Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East designed to train clinicians and other health care workers about MDR-TB. The goal is for them not only to understand how to diagnose and treat the disease, but also how to put into place the practices that can prevent it from developing, such as improved infection control procedures and effective management of drug supplies.
Patients who do not correctly take the medicines required to complete their TB treatment are at high risk for developing drug-resistant tuberculosis and passing on these new strains of the disease to others. Strong programmes for case detection, diagnosis and patient monitoring are all critical to avoid this scenario. At the request of national tuberculosis programmes (NTPs), The Union’s MDR-TB experts are helping them review plans, procedures, policies and systems and making suggestions for improvement. In recognition of the pivotal role of laboratories in diagnosing and monitoring drug-resistant strains of the disease, The Union has also helped develop an international network of TB reference laboratories.
Use of poor quality medicines and drug shortages are also leading causes of drug-resistant TB. If the quality of first-line TB drugs is not assured - or the supply is not adequate to meet the needs of those in treatment - patients will not be cured and may develop MDR-TB. They will then require treatment with the more expensive second-line drugs (SLD). The Union is regularly part of all discussions concerning TB medicines at the international level, and published a joint report with Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) on DR-TB medicines last month. The Union also works closely with NTPs to support them in the implementation of best practices for ordering, storing and distributing medicines, as well as to assure the quality of the medicines selected for national procurement and to monitor their quality.
Treating drug-resistant TB is much more expensive and can take up to two years - creating a strain on both patients and health systems. Through its operational research and clinical trials programmes, The Union continually seeks new solutions to issues of prevention, treatment and control. The STREAM study, part of the USAID-funded TREAT TB Initiative, will soon begin enrolling patients in an international clinical trial of a nine-month treatment regimen for MDR-TB that has been very successful in a smaller study. This new regimen holds the potential to revolutionise treatment for the disease.
“New miracle tools from faster diagnostic tests to TB vaccines are being sought”, says Dr Billo, “and they may eventually address the issue of MDR-TB. But, in the meantime, it is absolutely essential to provide adequate funding for the well-trained staff, fully equipped health-care facilities and laboratories and quality-assured medicines that will allow us to take care of the patients who are sick today. These people can’t wait for tomorrow’s cures - and there is no reason they should have to.” (CNS)
Bobby Ramakant – CNS
(The author is a World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General’s WNTD Awardee 2008 and writes extensively on health and development through Citizen News Service (CNS). Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., website: )

It has been a year since Hajee Cassim Mohammed Jadwet, the patriarch of Jadwet group of companies, passed away in Kolkata at the age of 87. On his first death anniversary, the islanders remember him for his contribution to the economy of these islands. Cassim Jadwet was the director of R. Akoojee Jadwet & Company, which was the trade agent for the British government in Nicobar group of islands. He played an important role in improving the social and economical development of the nicobarese; he introduced the concept of currency and monetary system for the first time in Nicobars, replacing the barter system. For the first time in the history of Nicobars, he generated electricity with the help of generator sets in the early 40’s. He played a key role along with Bishop John Richardson, in setting up the two apex cooperative societies in the Nicobars, Ellon Hinengo Limited and Manula Mathai Limited. He played a key role in the Nicobar group those days where the administration had a very minimal control over Nicobar group, and entire affairs used to be run by R. Akoojee Jadwet & Co. The Nicobarese consider him as the father of modern Nicobar. In the year 1958, he donated a hospital building at Malacca village at Carnicobar for the welfare of the tribal community.
A visionary by nature, Cassim Jadwet played an important role in developing the commerce of Port Blair; he started the first travel agency in these islands – Island Travels, built the first five star hotel in Port Blair, Hotel Bay Island, which was designed by the world famous architect, Charles Correa. The Light House cinema hall was also established by him. Cassim Jadwet was also a board member of the Thai India Steel industry in Bangkok. Last year in March, the Honourable Lt. Governor, Lt. Gen. (Retd.) Bhopinder Singh, PVSM, AVSM, released the book titled “The Jadwet Saga”, which was an autobiography penned down by Late Hajee Cassim Mohammed Jadwet.
The Nicobari community, islanders and the members of the Jadwet family remembers this great legend on the occasion of his first death anniversary.