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Mizoram Women Under the Grip of Tobacco

t 50 percent of the total population," said Baruah.

"I sell minimum 50 packs of cigarettes and 170 paans (betel leaves laced with tobacco) every day," said 18-year old Nancy Malsawmtluangi from Tuikual area in the capital who goes to different offices and sells various tobacco products.

A study by the Aizwal civil hospital and spearheaded by Eric Zomawia, a senior pathologist and principal investigator, also showed that the risk of stomach cancer among women was significantly prominent in the past three years due to extensive use of tobacco in various forms.

Mizo women also top the cancer list in the country, Zomawia added.

According to the report of the Development of Atlas of Cancer in India (DACI), Aizawl district has the highest Minimal Age Adjusted Incidence Rate (MAAR) - 209.2 - among all districts in India among women, followed by Serchhip district.

"MAAR is obtained by calculating new cancer cases detected in every 100,000 population per year and adjusting it against world standard population," Zomawia said.

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