Foundation World School Mamath in collaboration with Central Government Pensioners Welfare Association (Kashmir) on Saturday organized a session on ‘The Bane of Drug Addiction in Kashmir’.
The chief guests were Dr. Muzaffar Khan, a noted clinical psychologist, and Mohammad Shafi Pandit (IAS Retired JKPSC Chairman). The statement reads that the objective to hold such an event was to sensitize the children on the rising trend of drug abuse, and the consequences that follow. The speakers on the occasion shared some facts on the substance abuse prevailing in the society. They painted a very grim picture as the drug addiction in Kashmir is rising at an alarming level.
“Drug addiction is across poor and rich, rural or urban, illiterate or literate. We receive patients as young as 14, and both the genders have been equally hit. There are different stages of drug addiction and it is scary. The substance abuse is getting complicated every passing day. We as a society have a responsibility if we want to save our future generations. We should have drug policy in schools as well,” said Dr. Muzaffar Khan.
He further said that the increase in number of crimes in Kashmir is directly related to the drug menace.
“The statistics are staggering. The consumption of narcotic drugs is estimated to have reached an alarming figure of Rs 3.5 Crore per day. People need to come out of the state of denial and reckon with the ground realities. Incidence of drug addiction is becoming more and more common in educational institutions, right from school to university level. According to UN statistics, the number of drug addicts in Kashmir is around 70,000, and the number of people having drug related issues, is around 600,000, as per a recent survey,” said Mohammad Shafi Pandit on the sidelines of the occasion.
In view of the exponential rise in drug users and paddlers, it has become an urgent societal issue, to be tackled with a multi-dimensional approach.