District Legal Service Authority in collaboration with Centre for Women’s Studies and Research, University of Kashmir conducted a webinar on Drug abuse/ addiction on 11th May, 2021 at 1:45 PM - 3:45 PM
District Legal Service Authority in collaboration with Centre for Women’s Studies and Research, University of Kashmir conducted a webinar on Drug abuse/ addiction. Webinar was formerly started by Adv. Amtul Basit Deva, she welcomed all the participants. She said that a Psychoactive substance use often tends, to be framed as a problem or a menace in public health or social welfare conferences or discussions, the exact extent of substance abuse use in Kashmir is not assessed adequately. Psychoactive substances such as alcohol, cannabis and opioids has been observed in Kashmir from many years.
In Kashmir, the drug addiction has been on rise for past few decades. almost 2.5 lakh youth is addicted or we can say affected population. The use of psychoactive substances causes significant health and social problems for the people who use them and also for others in their families and communities, using of psychotropic drugs is a self-destructive pattern that causes distress and problems and some use for the purpose of creating pleasurable effects on the brain .She said that under the influence of various narcotic drugs, people see images, hear sounds and feel sensations that seems real but do not exist, it has been observed that the valley has a tremendous rise in the substance abusers over the past decade.
Mr. Basit Deva said, Medical opiates such as morphine and codeine or Benzodiazepine were first used as recreational drug, later Cannabis was more widely used but over the past few years heroin and cocaine have been used abundantly and they have great health risks and financial risks also.
The second speaker was Adv. Naveed Gul, Penal Lawyer DLSA, said that according to Magnitude of Substance Abuse Survey(2019) about 2.1% of the country’s population ( 2.26 crore individuals) use opioids which include opium ( or variants of Poppy husk) which is grown in the villages, heroin( or its pure form- brown sugar). He also added that there are many reasons for drug problems in the valley, which includes living in conflict zone, lack of awareness, easy availability etc. He said that according to Ministry of Social Justice and empowerment 4.6% of total population of J&K use opioid drugs which accounts for 805 of addicts in Kashmir. He also explained The NDSP Act 1985owhichis an Act of the parliament of India that prohibits/ manufacturing. cultivation/possession/ sale/ purchasing/ transport/consumption of narcotic drugs or psycho-trophic drug abuses or substance.
At the end the stressed that it’s high time to save our generation from the drug abuses.
the third speaker was Ms. Laila Qureshi, Psychologist, she said that drug addiction is considered as a neurobiological disease. when a person becomes a drug addict it is very hard for him/her to spend a day without taking the drug. drugs that are the main cause of addiction are heroin, opium, morphine, inhalants, diazepam etc. It’s important to mention that only psychiatrists can provide psycho-trophic drugs and that too after ten sessions. drug addiction in Kashmir is continuously increasing among students, both males and females.
She further added that addiction, overdose and other side effects disrupt families, personal lives and professional lives. unfortunately, this leads to assumptions and stereotypes about those who use drugs. With the right treatment, recovery is possible. anyone can overcome substance abuse and related issues. Anyone can build a life that is safe, sober and free from substance abuse side effects.
The last speaker was Irfan Malla, P.G student CWSR, university of Kashmir, he said that as we know that Kashmir is one of the most militarized conflict zone of the world. the turmoil of the past many years has caused depression and psychological problems among a huge number of people and due to this depression, majority of people have found drugs to the only solution to get rid of the stress. He concluded his speech by saying that all of us must collectively share the responsibility to get rid of this menace.
At last Ms. Basit concluded the webinar by saying that to curb tis problem the first and foremost step which Government of J&K must take is to take strict action against drug peddlers, opioid cultivators and chemist -shops who sell psycho-tropic medicines. another important responsibility is of parents and teachers, instead of scolding or treating them harshly, they must deal with them with love and patience. They must try to increase their morale and confidence.
Parents must also consult professional interventionists to help find the real cause of stress and ways to manage it. NGO’s , Government, schools and colleges should regularly organize programmes and seminars to sensitize students and general masses about repercussions of drug abuses. It’ s imperative to eradicate the roots of drug addiction from our society.
After a productive webinar, constituting a lot of knowledge sharing through different participants who had joined the webinar from diverse fields, Ms. Basit thanked Coordinator, CWSR, University of Kashmir, and Secretary District Legal Service Authority, convener for this Webinar, she expressed her gratitude to the team of CWSR and all those who had put their efforts to organize and make this webinar a success. She was of the view that more such programmes should be organized for knowledge sharing and awareness and the institutions should collaborate with each other so as to give a platform to research scholars and students wherein they can share and learn from each other’s work and experiences.