Students create awareness on smoking through face painting, street play

The students of the School of Communication of Dr. G.R. Damodaran College of Science highlighted the ill-effects of smoking through face painting and street play at an awareness campaign held in the college here on Wednesday. Their aim was to create a nicotine-free society.

Themes included a blackened respiratory system, a polluted environment, and many more stark reflections of reality that were the fallouts of smoking. This was to get the message across to the youth on the eve of “No Smoking Day” that falls on March 14.

Street play

Another creative representation was a street play the students put up to bring out the ill-effects of passive smoking, and how the addicted person is unable to give up the habit, even for his loved ones.

Balu, starts as a child smoker and remains hooked to the habit even after his marriage and the birth of his son. Despite repeated requests and advice from his wife and childhood friend Ramu, he is unable to shun the habit. He is neither inclined to give up the habit for his own health, nor for the well-being of his loved ones, who are passive smokers.

It so happens that while he slaps his wife who stops him from getting close to his son because of his smoke-filled breath, his son gets a head injury. The boy is admitted to hospital in a critical condition. His friend Ramu tries to reason out with him, but to no avail. In a few days, Ramu dies of cancer caused by passive smoking.

The play was set in a way that the story was narrated by the spirit of Ramu who towards the end of the play says that at least now he hoped that his friend had given up smoking. However, the play ends with Balu sitting as a loser unable to give up the deadly habit.

B. Karthik, first-year student of Visual Communication, who played the lead role, said the focus was on making smokers realise that passive smoking was worse than active smoking, because it affected others in addition to the smoker himself.

After the creative representations, there was something to listen to P. Kanagaraj, professor of political science, Government Arts College, who briefed them on the harmful effects of nicotine use.

P. Parameshwari, Assistant Professor of the School, said the students with specialisation in Public Relations organised the event to consciously give it a creative tinge.

That the message got across better with the craft, colours and creativity, was there to be seen.

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