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End user of drugs is a victim, not criminal: Div Com

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Launches toll-free helpline for counseling of victims

Srinagar: Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Thursday said the end-user of drugs is a victim, not criminal, and society needs to be empathetic towards such victims. He also launched a toll-free number 1 800 180 7202, a mental health helpline named Sukoon, for the counseling victims of drug addiction.

An official spokesman said that a day-long awareness programme against drug addiction under “Nasha Mukt Bharat Abhiyan” was held at Tagore Hall. The programme was organized by the Shahr-e-Khas Literary and Cultural Welfare Society in collaboration with Divisional administration, Kashmir, and J&K Academy of Art, Culture & Languages, and J&K Excise department.

Besides Divisional Commissioner (Div Com) Kashmir, Pandurang K Pole, who was chief guest on the occasion, the programme was attended by Deputy Commissioner Srinagar, MD, NHM J&K, Deputy Excise Commissioner, Director Colleges, Joint Director Information Kashmir, Joint  Controller LMD, Deputy Director Information Kashmir, officers, teachers, students and others, the spokesman said.

Speaking on the occasion, Div Com said that India has the 2nd largest population in the world with the majority of population consisting of youth. He underlined the requirements of reaping the dividends of the young population and called for saving and protecting youth from falling into drug abuse.

He said many anti-social and anti-national elements are ruining the lives of youth by pushing them in the menace and vowed that strict action shall be taken against drug peddlers, dealers and exhorted on breaking their nexus.

Pole emphasised that the end-user of drugs is a victim, not criminal, and society needs to be empathetic towards such victims. While sensitizing the media, Div Com asked for using the word “victim” for those who consume drugs. He said these innocent “victims” need sympathy and counseling instead of hate so as to ensure that they get back to normal life.

Div Com also launched a toll free Sakoon Helpline number 18001807202, for the counseling  of such victims.

Speaking on the occasion, MD, National Health Mission highlighted the symptoms and consequences of drug abuse and warned that a  pandemic of liver failure will be seen in coming years due to consumption of drugs. He said one of the main reasons for sudden heart attacks among youth is use of drugs.

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