Production and distribution of drugs and narcotics is assuming alarming proportions in the city with the each passing day. Cultivation of poppy and charas has become popular among some farmers in the State and more and more people are lured to it because it is a very lucrative trade. Those involved with this trade never take into account that uses the drugs and what will be the consequences if a large number of youth get addicted to drugs. Unfortunately more and more youth in the State are getting addicted to it. Strangely, even the boys of affluent parents too have got addicted to drugs. Only a week or ten day ago we took up the issue of drug addiction editorially and analysed how serious the menace was and what are the threats to the society posed by the youth addicted to drugs and narcotics.
The issue has reverberated in the Legislative Assembly, and it appears that members have begun to take keen interest in what we had been pleading for a long time. We reiterate here that the long term impact of drug addiction if not family being the best school, a youth must take the basics of life behaviour from its parents. A household with good and clean habits and healthy environments will make far reaching impact on the youth for whom chances of going astray are rare. It is the wrong environment in which the young boys are brought up that can have everlasting impact if the environment is bad and unhealthy.
It is good that the Legislative Assembly has unanimously passed a resolution vowing to eradicate drug addiction from the state lock stock and barrel. Private Member Bill was tabled by the MLA from Banihal. Introducing the bill, the member elaborated the damaging impact of drug addiction not only on the person addicted but to the entire family and categorized it a social evil. The members from the opposition joined their voice and thus paved the way for a unanimous resolution which was passed by voice vote. In this connection, it is to be noted that the family, society and the Government all must play a concerted role to overcome the menace.
In the first instanced the police have the biggest role to play and that is of not allowing drugs to be trafficked from town to town. The Police have to mount very strong vigil after they come to know of the conduits and the routes through which drug trafficking is going on. The Police are also supposed to take stringent action against those whom they find involved in drug trafficking. It is known to all that drug peddlers are not working in isolation but there exists a network which needs to be demolished. This can be a transnational network in many cases. Our alert police force is fully aware of such networks and they can mount strict vigil to neutralise them. Additionally, drug trafficking is now reported to be linked to terrorism also. We know that the Afghan Taliban had almost legitimized poppy cultivation because they used the revenues from poppy trade to fuel the war machine. From Taliban, the drug peddling exercise reached the Pakistani Taliban and then to Kashmir terrorists also. Drugs have been recovered from the possession of slain or captured terrorists in Kashmir. Wherefrom did they obtain the drugs is what the police must be able to tell us. All that we can say is that there is unknown nexus on that count also.
An important suggestion is that drug treatment centres should be opened preferably at district level hospitals or at the least a few centres in major towns of the State. Using modern methods of correcting the addicts it should be possible to retrieve them and save the society from destruction. It should be possible for the police and also the civil society to keep a track of drug peddlers and bring them to book.