Kerala, India's most literate state with more than 93.91 percent literacy rate, is also home for largest number of alcoholics, cancer patients and children addicted to tobacco. A study by National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC) and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) revealed this startling facts.
The study said that 74 percent of Kerala's children between the age group 5-18 consume tobacco. As part of the study, a total of 119 children were covered examining their pattern, profile and substance use, reported American Bazaar.
"Alcohol, tobacco and inhalants are common initial substances of abuse and have been described as gateway substances," says the study.
The main reason that leads to this situation is the easy availabilty of alcohol and tobacco to the children in Kerala. It has to be noted that, most of these products are not illegal too, the study noted.
Recently, the 'God's own country,' as Kerala is known for its beautiful topography, was in the news again for the wrong reasons.
Surpassing hard-drinking states like Punjab and Haryana, Kerala has the highest per capita liquor consumption in the country with over 8 liters per person a year. About one in 10 men in the state is a heavy alcoholic consumer and this amounts to 5 percent of the state's population addicted to liquor.
As far as cancer is concerned, the most literate state bags the highest number of cancer patients in the country, the State government itself has stated this recently.
The State Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has stated that Kerala has the highest number of cancer patients in the country. Out of every one lakh males, 133 persons suffer from the disease, while in the case of females, it is 123 for every one lakh females.
35,000 cancer cases, on an average, are reported every year in the state, according to the State Health Department officials. The officials have attributed the enormity of the disease to wrong food habits and environmental problems.
The highest number of cancer patients in the state has promted the creation of a matrimonial website to find life partners for cancer survivors in the state.