Drug addiction needs a comprehensive approach
Post by RK News on Monday, July 3, 2023
Drug abuse that has gripped the youth in the UT is a serious concern. Despite the fact that many reports are issued on a regular basis, the menace requires increased attention from all sections of the society. Medical experts are of the opinion that easy availability of many pharmaceutical drugs that have sedative properties is one of the main factors of rising drug abuse in the valley. Young people are more likely to fall in the trap of drug abuse, particularly when the drugs or substances are easy to get. While the onus is on J&K police to seize and destroy all illegal drugs and substances and bring to book the peddlers, it is also the responsibility of other institutions and administration to intensify the fight against drug abuse. Also, People of the UT need to introspect and find remedial measures for the disease that has done much harm to the society. The larger role has to be played by the government as with few improved policy measures and legislations drug and substance abuse can be controlled. A well-disposed argument to check abuse of pharmaceutical drugs is that most of them, particularly the sedatives, are prescription drugs. There is a legal warning on the sale of prescription drugs by the sellers who have to obtain a valid prescription from the buyers. But it is a weak measure, as fake prescriptions are not hard to get, a fact that pharmaceutical drug sellers know very well. Furthermore, the availability of many such drugs in home is not uncommon. A stronger policy measure is required to make pharmaceutical drug stores stick to norms and not just the formality of seeking a paper. And at home, people have to ensure that the drugs remain out of the reach of the young. Therefore more holistic approaches are needed to win the war against illicit use of drugs and substances; approaches that would cut through and across the sections of the society. For example, education institutions like schools and colleges can provide a helping hand by spreading awareness about the drug abuse impacts. Social welfare department and medical institutes must increase the frequency of counseling and awareness programs. There has been a demand for increasing drug de-addition centers in the UT. If it is not possible to have de-addiction centers in all sub-district hospitals, at least in district hospitals there should be space and provisions for such centers. The government must ensure a tight vigil on the sale of prescription drugs (that are likely to be abused) on the counters. Both possession and procurement of drugs for illicit use must be dealt with sternly. As the problem is not restricted to an individual or family only, the responsibility of fighting drug abuse has to be shared by the public collectively. It is a social obligation that cannot be totally dismissed by any stakeholder in the society. A collective cause can be the best preventive medicine to treat this disease. No nation can afford to lose its young generation to drugs. Let us all join hands to build a brighter future for Jammu & Kashmir.