Drug Abuse Current Affairs - 2019
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The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment has drafted National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (2018-2023) for addressing the problem of drug and substance abuse in the country, dumping a long-pending draft policy on the matter.
Components of the Action Plan
The components of the National Action Plan for Drug Demand Reduction (2018-2023) are:
- The Action Plan aims to employ a multi-pronged strategy involving education, de-addiction and rehabilitation of affected individuals and their families to address the issue.
- The Action Plan focuses on preventive education, awareness generation, counselling, treatment and rehabilitation of drug-dependent people, besides training and capacity-building of service providers through the collaborative efforts of the Centre, state and NGOs.
- Several measures like coordination with implementing agencies for controlling the sale of sedatives, painkillers and muscle relaxant drugs, holding awareness generation programmes and checking online sale of drugs by stringent monitoring by the cyber cell are proposed under the Action Plan.
- The Action Plan also proposes awareness generation through social, print, digital and online media, and engagement of celebrities, besides strengthening the national toll-free helpline for drug prevention.
- The Action Plan calls for persuading principals, directors, vice chancellors of educational institutions to ensure that no drugs are sold within/nearby the campus.
- The Action Plan also aims at increasing community participation and public cooperation in the reduction of demand by involving Panchayati Raj institutions, Urban Local Bodies, Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan and other local groups like Mahila Mandals, self-help groups etc to tackle the menace of drugs.
- A steering committee would be constituted under the chairmanship of the secretary, Social Justice Ministry, and with representatives from the Ministries of Health, Human Resource Development, Women and Child Development, Home Affairs, Skill development and Entrepreneurship to monitor the effective implementation of the Action Plan.
- The Action Plan proposes module for re-treatment, ongoing treatment and post-treatment of addicts of different categories and age groups and database on substance use.
The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment in collaboration with the National Drug Dependence Treatment Centre (NDDTC) under the AIIMS, is conducting a national survey on the extent and pattern of substance abuse.
The International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is observed every year on June 26 across the world to raise awareness of major problem that illicit drugs. The day is also observed as an expression of United Nations’ (UN) determination to strengthen action and cooperation to achieve goal of an international society free of drug abuse.
The 2018 theme of this day is “Listen First – Listening to children and youth is the first step to help them grow healthy and safe”. It seeks to highlights ncreased incidence of drug abuse in the youth and kids. It aims at increasing support for science-based prevention of drug use and invests more in well-being of kids, youngsters and their families.
The day was officially instituted by UN after UN General Assembly (UNGA) by adopting resolution 42/112 in December 1987. The date was chosen to commemorate Lin Zexu’s (Chinese scholar and official of the Qing dynasty) dismantling of the opium trade in Humen, Guangdong, just before the First Opium War in China (1839–42).
The day recognizes that despite continued and increased efforts by international community, the world drug problem continues to constitute serious threat to public health, safety and well-being of humanity, in particular young people, and national security and sovereignty of States and that it undermines socio-economic and political stability and sustainable development.
It encourages Commission and UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to continue their work on international drug control and urges all Governments to provide fullest possible financial and political support to enable UNODC to continue, expand and strengthen its operational and technical cooperation activities, within its mandates.