BY: Aqib Ahmad
Srinagar: Is government aware that a large number of youths addicted to drugs have reached at near “death condition” and some of them have died in Jammu and Kashmir?
This was among four questions posed to the government in parliament on alarming use of drug addiction amongst youths in Jammu and Kashmir.
The other questions by Congress parliamentarian and former Madhya Pradesh minister Motilal Vora includes whether Government was aware that the business of drugs is spreading quickly in Jammu and Kashmir and a large number of youths have fallen to this menace. Besides, he had sought details of measures taken against it.
Responding to these questions, Minister of State G Kishan Reddy on Wednesday said 2855 drug seizures cases were registered and 4040 drug-related arrested made under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act in last three years.
Quoting Narcotics Control Bureau, the minister said that last year 975 drug seizure cases were registered and 1425 drug-related arrests made. Both seizure as well as arrests was higher than last two years. In 2017, he said, there were 960 seizure cases and 1330 persons arrested. In 2018, 910 seizure cases were registered and 1330 persons arrested.
He said the Government of India and the Government of Jammu and Kashmir are taking all preventive and enforcement measures to curb drug addiction.
“The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment (MoSJE), Government of India is implementing a National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (NAPDDR) for 2018-2025,” he said. The Plan, he said, aims at reduction of adverse consequences of drug abuse through a multipronged strategy.
“The activities under the NAPDDR, inter-alia, include awareness generation programmes in schools, colleges, universities, workshops, seminars , with parents, community based intervention programmes for vulnerable adolescent and youth in the community, provision of treatment facilities and capacity building of service providers.”
Under the scheme of ‘Prevention of Alcoholism and Substance (Drugs) Abuse’, MoSJE is also providing central assistance for one de-addiction centre in Jammu & Kashmir namely, ‘Society for the Promotion of Youth and Masses’.
“With financial assistance from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC), of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi has started mentoring and supporting the Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS), Srinagar in providing drug addiction treatment services as part of the Drug Treatment Clinic (DTC) scheme,” he said.
Further, he said, as per the Jammu and Kashmir Drug De-addiction Policy (11 January 2019), many steps have been taken to address the menace of drugs.
Amongst other things, he said, de-addiction centers have been established in existing facilities.
“The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir has five full-fledged de-addiction centers running in five medical colleges, which provide both outpatient and inpatient de-addiction services. These de-addiction centers are located in Government Medical Colleges (GMC) Srinagar, Jammu, Baramulla, Anantnag and Kathua.”
Besides, he said, 10 Police Drug de-addiction centers are also functional in Jammu and Kashmir, where a large number of drug addicted patients are being treated.
In order to train, sensitize and raise awareness, the minister said, the Department of Health and Medical Education of Jammu & Kashmir also conducts several programmes for youths. (GNS)