Asiatic Society

The Asiatic Society of Smoking

Tobacco in Indian Society July 5, 2011

Filed under: History,Smoking,Society — asiaticsociety @ 6:07 pm

Tobacco reached reached India in 1605 and since then the country’s tobacco production began. The first Beedies (Indian tobacco cigarettes) were invented by tobacco farms workers who rolled the tobacco leaves. Since the 1930s the world demand for tobacco products increased and India also experienced an enormous upswing in Bidi production. The reason for this unprecedented development can also be credited to the politics of Gandhi who favored the Indian product and supported the domestic industry. Intellectuals and educated Indians started to smoke Beedies instead of cigarettes to send a clear signal against imported goods and British influence.

Today Beedies are still smoked to demonstrate independence and Indian national consciousness.