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Cigarette for Biscuits

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Kathmandu, 18 February, 2016: People have found a new friend for their coffee other than biscuits. Cigarette. A puff of smoke to start their day, a puff to end their day and a lot in between. Cigarette has taken over the lives of people here in Kathmandu. Teenagers, pre-teens, adults or old people, smoking has become a way of live or atleast a big part of their lives.

Smoking has become a way of socializing, a base to start a conversation. A thing to talk about with almost anyone but nobody has a perfect answer when asked why they smoke. Many people admit that it was curiosity that led them to their first cigarette, friendship that took them to their second and addiction to their third which then just became numbers of countless butts in the dustbin. Teens seem to believe puffing smoke in the air not only corrodes their lungs but makes them ‘cool’ and ‘trendy’.

Number of adult smokers seems to be decreasing but the place is being filled mostly by teens. Easy availability of cigarettes is a convenience for the smokers.  The pictures of corroded lungs and teeth on the packets doesn’t seem to matter, banning of advertisements didn’t make a difference nor did the price increment. The smokers just go on increasing. The health problems that arise are stored in a corner of the mind in Pandora’s Box. The number doesn’t seem to decrease until the people change their perspective towards smoking.

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