Home Minister Shrestha calls for combined efforts to combat drug abuse

According to Ministry of Home Affairs, there are 130,424 drug abusers in the country.

NL Today

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Kathmandu: Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Home Affairs Narayan Kaji Shrestha has said combined efforts are needed to combat drug abuse and manage its multidimensional consequences. In his address to a program organized by the Ministry of Home Affairs on Monday on the occasion of International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking-2023, the Minister said the containment of drug abuse was necessary to advance towards a healthy, civilized and a prosperous society. The Minister said the government is committed to making the implementation of preventive measures against drug abuse and illicit trafficking more effective in coordination and cooperation with the state bodies. “It is urgent to forge a national unity against drug-related crime to pursue holistic development and prosperity of the nation, peace and order and the good governance,” the Home Minister said, adding that dedicated efforts from all quarters were vital to implement national policies and strategies and legal provisions against illegal drug use effectively. Control and prevention of drug abuse is a multi-concerned issue and its production, supplies, storage, transportation and use should be regulated through mutual coordination and collaboration by preventing its abuse, the Minister said.

On the occasion, Home Secretary Dinesh Bhattarai said the drug abuse could result in severe health complications on the users, leading to the separation of a family and a rise in social disorder and financial crimes, posing a grave threat to security.

National Youth Council Vice- Chair Surendra Basent said an individual, society and the entire nation should play a role to discourage and contain the substance abuse.

International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is marked on June 26 every year. The theme this year was “People First: stop stigma and Discrimination, strengthen Prevention”. The United Nations General Assembly had decided on December 7, 1987, to observe June 26 as the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

There are 130,424 drug abusers in the country, according to data with the Ministry. The police arrested 4,220 people in drug abuse cases by April, 2023). Five thousand nine hundred eleven people have been serving term in prison in drug abuse cases, and around 5,000 drug abusers have been in rehabilitation centers.

Awareness programs were organized, videos played, plays and dances performed, and poems recited with the involvement of the police, Armed Police Force and students. On the occasion, DPM Shrestha handed appreciation letters to security forces and various organizations for their contribution to control drug abuses.