Prevalence of cigarette and bidi smoking among rickshaw pullers in Dhaka city

Mahbubur Rahman, ASM Nurullah Awal, Tsuguya Fukui, Junichi Sakamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objective: Rickshaw pullers in Dhaka city, Bangladesh are exposed to severe air pollution due to their long stay on city roads. In addition, smoking could further jeopardize their health status. The objective of this study is to estimate the prevalence of cigarette and bidi smoking among the rickshaw pullers in Dhaka city. Methods: One thousand rickshaw pullers (100 from each of the 10 blocs of Dhaka city) were randomly chosen and underwent interviewer administered questionnaire survey during August-October 2003. Data on demographics, education, rickshaw-pulling, smoking status, duration, and daily consumption were collected by 4 trained interviewers using pre-tested questionnaire. Prevalence of cigarette and bidi smoking, and their sociodemographic correlates were examined using bivariate and multivariate analyses. Results: The overall prevalence of current smoking was 75.9%, while the prevalence of cigarette, bidi and both smoking were 39.2%, 15.7% and 20.9%, respectively. Multinomial logistic regression analysis showed that those who were older, had lower mean schooling years and smoked more sticks per day are more likely to be bidi or both smokers. Conclusion: The prevalence of smoking among rickshaw pullers is very high compared to that in general population. Immediate intervention programs are warranted to reduce the future burden of smoking related morbidity among them who are already exposed to tremendous pollution on city roads.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)218-222
Number of pages5
JournalPreventive Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Bidi
  • Cigarette
  • Dhaka
  • Rickshaw pullers
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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